Q&A with Adri Rosembert: dispeller of fundraising myths
// By Jacqueline Brennan
Want to help your community take direct action in rapid response moments and strengthen your long-term fundraising? Go digital! In the Upswell workshop, “Bottling Lightning with Digital Fundraising,” co-presenter Adri Rosembert of ActBlue will share tools and best practices you can use to develop an adaptable digital fundraising program, and establish and maintain continued engagement with your supporters. Adri says they’d love to dispel some of the myths about digital fundraising. It’s also one thing they wished everyone in the sector knew about and used. We caught up with Adri to learn more!
Q: If you had a time machine, would you go back in time or into the future, and why?
AR: I’d go into the future, mostly because there are a lot of young people right now who are doing really, really amazing organizing work in building these beautiful communities, and I’d like to see them all grown up, what that looks like, and the support that goes forward with that. And being at a tech organization, I’d like to see what tech is coming out. I’m a little scared about the future of tech, but I know what the path looks like, I don’t know what the future looks like, so I think I’d rather do that.
Q: If you were President, what’s the first change you would make?
AR: The first change I would make is to ensure there were equal rights and protections for LGBTQ folks, particularly trans folks of color.
Q: What one thing would help you do your job better?
AR: I think if we dispelled some myths around fundraising and what it means for an organization and what it looks like. There’s a lot of really beautiful work that’s being done by community organizations, and sometimes there’s this myth around scarcity and folks being siloed. So if folks all understand that there’s plenty of support – we work better when we work together – it would make my job a lot easier in getting folks on board with digital fundraising. I also wish that folks understood that fundraising online doesn’t have to be expensive (ActBlue is free!), and that you don’t have to invest tools that cost your organization thousands of dollars. There are ways to do it inexpensively or free, and there isn’t a catch. I know that folks are used to there being a catch with everything. But there isn’t.
Q: What’s more important, doing the right thing, or doing things right?
AR: I think both are true. I think you can do the right thing and do things right. Because the right thing is doing things right, no? Are we getting philosophical? I feel like doing the right thing is doing things right.
Q: What’s one thing that you would like everyone in the sector to know about?
AR: If I can relate it back to digital fundraising, I’d say you need to focus on building a recurring program. It’s important to think about building up a recurring donor base for many reasons. One, mainly because you’re building up real relationships with people, but also it’s a sustainable form of revenue you can bank on every month to know – this is how we budget for things, and this is what we’ll have. It gives you more flexibility in the event of more one-time things, or if other forms of funding don’t come through. So focus on recurring.
Bottling Lightning with Digital Fundraising is happening Thursday, November 14, 2:30 – 3:45pm.