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Grant funding sources like Foundations, Corporations, Government Agencies and even Individual donors are attracted by projects that are:
Solutions to Problems,
To increase your chances of getting funding, make sure your proposal touches on one or more of these eight funder attractors. In this article, you will learn how to make your ideas and proposal more attractive to funders by using the power of “originality”… the first on our list.
As you might guess, a truly original idea will stir interest and attract attention. Here are four proven ways to make your ideas outrageously original:
Be first – Find out some methodology, approach or system in your field that has been proven successful elsewhere in the country, but has never been tried in your geographic area. The early bird does indeed get the worm. By being the earliest program, you will be perceived as being novel, forward-thinking, progressive. Funders in your geographic area will be impressed that you are the first, even though you know that you’re not. (It’s your secret!) You’re smart, building on the successes of others and initiating first. You beat your competition to the punch.
Be new and fresh – Some of the biggest social problems – poverty, hunger, educational disadvantages – have been around forever. Many of the same old problems could be viewed as stale and out-dated when a fresh, new approach is presented. For example, I have a friend who brings his own creative genius in performing arts to social problems like death and dying, at-risk high school students and the foster care system. Instead of using traditional methods, he uses dancing, singing, comic books… that create extraordinary results. Funders – even conservative ones in the Department of Justice – absolutely love him and his programs! Think of how your project could bring something totally new and fresh to existing problems. Use your beginners mind to explore ways your program can be unique, innovative, novel, inventive, creative, unusual.
Be ‘not traditional’ – I enjoy a refreshingly original interpretation of the classics, like a new rendition of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Likewise, departures from traditional or previous practice can make you appear original. For example, reviews of a Foundation that is more progressive and new school would be attracted to proposals that set them apart from old school approaches. Sometimes being unconventional – even a nonconformist – can set you apart, but this is risky business. Are you willing to take the risk?
Be smart – Keep in mind that originality is a two-edged sword. It may not always be a good thing. For example, in your funder research, you find a funder who is ultra conservative, perhaps a Federal government health agency. You discover that its values are traditional and old-fashioned. In this case, a nontraditional, alternative health approach may not be the wisest choice. It may be better to use traditional health strategies… in a nontraditional way.
In this case, you want to make sure you do not alienate reviewers with an original proposal that is too risky in the funder’s eyes.
And now I would like to invite you to claim your free subscription to the Grant Writing Newsletter when you visit [http://GrantWritingNewsletter.com]http://GrantWritingNewsletter.com.