Measuring the Un-measurable

Sometimes because of one situation or another your organization will not give you measurable statistics. Maybe you are working on a venture project that has not yet been created, maybe you’ve been told to raise money for something that is a good idea but has no staff support. Here are a few things I’ve done to survive in this measureless world.

Straight away I’ll make sure that I can measure my own fundraising success to help me in building a future case for measurable results. It is important that you keep trying to get these measurable results. Do not settle for doing a bad job at showing your organization and it’s projects are a success.

A great stepping stone I’ve used is to set-up equivalencies so you have example numbers of what a gift can purchase. This allows donors to trust in how you will be spending their money but can provide them with great tangible ways of understanding the difference their gift can make.

When facts and measurements are scarce, you have to make sure that you are selling the ideas or founding principles of your organization. You can do this through client stories of success or of opportunity. Even “generalized” client stories of what a life could be like can make a significant impact. Client stories are really great as they provide you a way to re-tell the success of your organization through someone else. People will often connect to a compelling story before a promising statistic or a measurable result.

What does your organization do? I think we should strive for measurable results but when those results are scares we need to do something. What do you do in your organization?


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