10 Questions to Ask in Your Next Fundraising RFP
“Help, I need somebody, Help, not just anybody, Help, you know I need someone, help.”
So, after reading last month’s blog post, you’ve decided that it does make sense for you to engage a fundraising agency. You’re looking for new and innovative ways to improve upon an existing program — or perhaps launch a new initiative that already has management’s buy-in.
But how do you determine which agency is right for you?
Whether you decide to interview agencies over the phone or go through a more formalized proposal process, consider asking the following questions.
- How would you approach this project? What’s your methodology? Can you walk me through the timeline — including project milestones.
- What is the number 1 mistake you see clients/organizations make when trying to accomplish what we’re setting out to do?
- What are the key capabilities and differentiators you offer that would be valuable for the success of this project/relationship?
- How would you measure success at the end of this project / our first campaign together? (Listen to what your agency has to say, then share your measurement for success with them and ensure that you are both on the same page.)
- What do you think your most successful client partnerships have in common?
- Describe two actions you would take to move our relationship to a win-win partnership and two actions you would ask us to take to move the relationship to a win-win partnership
- Please provide the names, titles, and relevant background of personnel who will oversee the project.
- How frequently and in what manner are communications between our two teams?
- Tell me about a client who ended a relationship with you in the past year. What was the reason and what did you do to ensure a smooth transition to the clients next agency?
- References and/or case studies
This list is culled from the questions we’ve been asked over the past decade. The answers to these questions will help you understand the agency’s overall approach, its expectations of you as a client, and its process. These questions will also present an opportunity for the agency to tell you its story in a way that will be meaningful to you and helpful in your selection process.