Developing a Case For Support: For both the head and heart of a donor

1 Day

In a competitive market, donors and others whose support you need are bombarded with competing demands, appeals and ideas. How do you gain a hearing for your organization? 

Under pressure to perform, we search for clever slogans, marketing ideas and the next “ice bucket challenge.”  But the most strategic communications tool for charitable and not-for-profit organizations is the Case for Support.

A Case for Support is a portrait of your not-for-profit organization that “makes the case” for why the donor should support you.  

Case work is about both the head and heart of the donor. Your challenge is to evaluate your organization through eyes of the discriminating donor -- and then to describe your work in ways that resonate with the donor’s priorities.

A well-prepared case is fundamental to marketing and communication planning. A good Case helps forge consensus at the Board level, and supports recruitment and orientation of volunteers and even staff. The Case is fundamental to every form of fundraising from direct mail appeals and digital marketing, to laying the foundation for a capital campaign.

Get heard. Be understood. Generate support. That’s the work of the case for support. 

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand how the Case for Support powers your charitable and not-for-profit communications

  • Analyze the key questions you must answer to win others to your cause or organization

  • Define your Unique Value Proposition and how it is presented in your communications

  • Understand the psychology and motives of different types of donors and how to allow for them in your case and communications

  • Identify the power of key messages, and how to infiltrate them throughout your presentations

  • Create an outline for your own comprehensive and compelling Case for Support

  • Plot the path from the organizational Case for Support to the Case Statements you need for various appeals and other communications

  • Bonus content:  dissect the differences in approaching these audiences for funding: government, foundations, businesses and individuals and how to make your case useful for all of them

Who should attend

Writers, communications staff, development directors and marketing managers for charities and not-for-profit organizations all will benefit. If you’re responsible for telling the story of an organization in a way that generates buy-in and support, this course is for you! You’ll leave with already having begun to develop your own compelling Case for Support.


Interested in learning more?