Grant writing success is the unicorn of the nonprofit world. Any experienced grant writer knows well the frustrations, struggles, and challenges that come with consistently applying for grant awards.
Funders accept grant applications at a rate of about 10 percent across the nonprofit industry. That means you’re applying for many more grants than you’re receiving, and that process can certainly add additional challenges to an already arduous process.
So what does it take to actually succeed at grant writing — and to sustain that success over the long term? Here are a few essential elements of a successful grant writing program.
A successful grant writing program hinges on a great system of communication between the grant writer and the organization’s program staff and management. Work closely with your grant writer to ensure success.
Persistent efforts yield better results than applying for grants in spurts. Lay out a long-term grant writing program and be diligent with your application efforts. Don’t let rejections discourage you.
This one is fairly obvious, but it’s pretty hard to have a strong grant proposal without strong programs that are backed up by research, show success through measurable outcomes and goals, and have a great staff running them.
Strong writing skills
Your organization might be doing wonderful work, but if you can’t communicate that thoroughly in a grant proposal, you’re fighting a battle you’ll never win. Hire a great grant writer to get the job done.
The ability to learn from your mistakes
Most organizations do not follow up after a funder declines to fund their grant application. But if you’re able to get in touch with the grantmaker to find out why they didn’t fund the request, you can learn more about their goals, improve future applications and overall messaging, and hone in on your grant writing strategy.
Learn more about our grant writing services here.