The Fundamental Elements of Follow-Up

How should you follow up with potential advocates? For example, you might have friends who were going to talk to someone else about your ministry for you because it seems up their alley. They were to have lunch together two days ago, and you would like to see how it went. How do you do that without prying into personal business or coming off as pushy?

Maybe you have someone that has begun reaching out to multiple friends for you, becoming a true advocate on your financial partnership team; how do you check in with their conversations on your behalf?

When you’re sending a follow-up email in these instances, remember the basics of following up. Keep it short, keep it focused, and make sure you're asking an actual question!

Keep It Short

A really important thing to remember whether you're first reaching out or following up is to keep it simple and to the point. If you’re too heavy handed with the pleasantries or try to start with a, "how's life? Hope the family is great! I'd love to hear about the trip you took this summer!" Can begin to feel like a front, even if you're genuinely interested. While it's completely acceptable to have a pleasantry, keep it simple like, "I hope you're having a great week." So, it's better in almost every scenario to keep it brief and to the point.

Keep It Focused

In this specific situation, you could say something like: "Hey, we wanted to thank you guys again for offering to share our ministry information with your friends; people with a heart for students and discipleship are exactly who we're looking for. Did you have a chance to talk with them? If so, how did it go?" 

Remember, following up on someone's word is not prying into personal business.

End With A Question

Okay, here's an essential bonus element: you always want to ask a clear question in the closing of your email, preferably at the very end. You want to stay away from language like, "let me know if you have any questions" or, "excited to hear how it went." These can be totally fine to include, but only if you've also asked a direct question.

Using a direct question communicates that a response is required. The previous statements are just that - statements. Without a direct question, there's less of a need to respond. So, in your closing, make sure you're asking a question that will result in the answer you're looking for!

Would you like your fundraising questions answered on demand? Check out our new GO Coaching service!


Jenny Karr, Director of Training & Coaching Services

My mission is to train, equip, and support people in ministry and as the Director of Training and Coaching Services, I get to do all of those things in one role! When I’m not coaching, training, or writing blogs, I’m enjoying time at home or in the city with my husband, daughter, and friends here in Nashville, TN.

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