If you’re not at full-funding and have already:
-brainstormed for new ministry partners (and contacted them about your ministry and funding needs),
-contacted present ministry partners about increasing their regular giving,
-asked annual donors to give again,
-encouraged occasional ministry partners to give through NavDirect (EFT),
-invited lapsed ministry partners to “come on back,” or
-asked key ministry partners to refer you to people who may have interest in your ministry,
but still need more contacts, then a Ministry Partner Prospect List (MPPL) may help. Ministry Partner Prospect Lists include names of up to 50 Navigator ministry partners who’ve given a gift to an organizational (non-staff) designation within the last 18 months. The list may also possibly include some lapsed staff ministry partners, but the ministry partner will not have given to any Navigator staff in at least 18 months. These ministry partners know The Navigators well enough to have given a gift, but we don’t know how well they know us. That’s where you come in, and that’s what makes this opportunity challenging . . . and fun.
-You may request a Ministry Partner Prospect List for a radius around a starting zip code or for specified zip code ranges. Ministry Partner Prospect Lists are to be used for scheduling face-to-face appointments and not to simply add a group of names to your mailing list. The purpose of your call (or letter, if you can’t reach the ministry partner by phone) is to arrange a meeting with the prospective ministry partner, not to ask directly for support. This information is confidential, and there is no charge for the list.
-The staff who have had the most success with these lists have usually sent an introductory letter then simply called to introduce themselves, to thank the ministry partner for their previous gift(s) to The Navigators, and to set up a face-to-face appointment. Develop a simple script to help in your calling (like the one below). If they hesitate about meeting, stress that there is no obligation to give. If they definitely do not want to get together, ask if it would be OK to send them your newsletter periodically to update them on what God is doing. DO NOT send them a financial appeal via the mail or ask them to support you over the phone.
To request a Ministry Partner Prospect List:
You need the approval of your ministry supervisor or MPD coach before you request a Ministry Partner Prospect List so that someone who’s walking alongside you in the ministry partner development process is aware of your need for new names beyond your own contacts and beyond referrals from your contacts. Your supervisor or coach may be able to help you generate ideas for identifying additional contacts.
When you receive a Ministry Partner Prospect List, you need to make initial contact with the ministry partners within 6 weeks (your appointment may happen later). After 6 weeks, the ministry partner names you’ve received will go back into the pool of ministry partners that The Navigators or other staff may call. You will also need to submit a report of your contacts with the ministry partners to Staff Funding no later than 8 weeks from the time you receive the list. We must receive your completed report before we will supply any additional Ministry Partner Prospect Lists. Because we want ministry partner names to be available to all Navigators, we will send you a maximum of 100 names (approximately two Ministry Partner Prospect Lists) in a 12-month period.
E-mail email@example.com with the following information:
-Mission (entity) and location (e.g., Collegiate ministry at U. of Northern Iowa)
-Daytime area code and phone number
-Starting city and (one) zip code (we’ll pull names from a limited radius around that central point). Or you can give a zip code range of at least 10 zip codes (example: 80910–80920). Please do not list individual zip codes; zip code ranges generally produce more names.
-Brief description of why you need this list
-Request reviewed by (ministry supervisor, long-term ministry partner development coach, etc.)
-Reviewer’s relationship to staff (ministry supervisor, long-term MPD coach, etc.)
-Reviewed on (date)
Sample Phone Script:
Hello! This is Steve Staff with The Navigators Collegiate ministry in Madison, Wisconsin.
Is this (ministry partner name)? Do you have a moment to talk? (If it’s not a good time to talk, ask when you can call back—in a few minutes, an hour, tomorrow?)
Nav headquarters in Colorado gave me your name and number and indicated that you’ve given a gift to our (designation account name). Thank you so much for supporting that project. Your gift helps with that part of Navigator ministry.
I’m calling because I’m working on a special project with our ministry to college students in Madison. Would there be a time when I could get together with you for 45 minutes to an hour? I’d like to give you an update on our local Navigator ministry with college students, explain our funding needs, and ask you to consider becoming a partner with us locally.
Some lessons learned from Navigators who’ve used Ministry Partner Prospect Lists:
-This takes time and work. Think long term.
-Telling ministry stories is essential.
-Tailor your presentation to the prospective ministry partner’s interest.
-Be patient, but persevere.
-The biggest challenge is being able to connect with people via phone.
-Ask plainly and make your appeal simple.