More and more businesses and social causes these days are turning to grants as a means of securing funding to launch and scale their world-changing missions.
And with over $80b in grant funding being distributed across the country every year, this is a great move if you’re seeking to elevate your capacity for growth and impact.
Yet many newcomers to the grants gig find themselves overwhelmed and filled with doubt on whether they have the capacity, tools and knowledge to successfully navigate the path to grants success.
Hey… before you talk yourself into ditching your next application, let us reassure you that these doubts are absolutely unfounded. In fact, it’s possible for anyone to fearlessly craft high quality applications that are more than capable of winning game changing funding!
And for those of you who still think this task is easier said than done, the Grant’d team has pulled together our top 10 tips for successful grant writing that will get you started.
The Gatekeeper of Eligibility
With some funding bodies automatically discarding up to 30% of submissions in each application round and your valuable time at stake, you must always check carefully that your organisation and proposed project meet the eligibility criteria.
Time is your best friend
Even after you’ve cleared the hurdle of eligibility, a week is often not enough time to complete and submit a high-quality application. Always allow yourself plenty of time to research, create and edit compelling application content – your mind and body will also thank you for avoiding those last minute scrambles!
Start gathering your assets early
We also recommend safeguarding your valuable time by identifying and initiating the sourcing of any required documents before starting anything else! Because after all, there’s nothing worse than making last minute requests for supporting documents that you can only hope will arrive in time.
Know the Funding Body
Building a good understanding of the funding body’s priorities is equally as important as having clarity on your organisation’s funding needs. Your ability to clearly connect the dots between the two will have an immeasurable influence on whether or not your proposal is shortlisted.
Seek to speak with a representative of the funding body
Knowing the funding body doesn’t need to stop at reading the grant guidelines. Those of you who pick up the phone to personally introduce your project and ask how you can improve your case for funding will often receive insider advice – instantly putting you a step ahead of the rest!
Develop a clearly defined and compelling case for funding
Remember that you’re writing for a reader who knows nothing about your project yet is highly likely to have limited time and a short attention span. Where you’ve achieved a clear and concisely written submission that clearly connects the dots to the funding priorities, you’ll have crafted a potentially winning submission.
Back your claims of need and demonstrate community support
Increase the perceived impact value of your project by including relevant statistics and evidence of community support. As an example; the need for an Indigenous literacy program in rural Australia can be evidenced by Closing the Gap statistics and letters of support from local educators and elders.
Don’t underestimate the power of the budget
We suggest approaching the budget as an opportunity to demonstrate that your project is well planned, cost effective, and feasible – and this easier to achieve than many might think. Simply ensure that your budget is itemised, include quotes where required, and list all sources of income including in-kind support. Always take into account any other budgetary requirements such as minimum and maximum grant amounts or matched funding requirements.
Inject life and passion
Just because application forms often seem stodgy, your story doesn’t need to be boring too. Evocative words can be used, but not at the cost of concise expression. Where the application asks for supporting materials, consider it as an invaluable opportunity bring your project or its beneficiaries to life through video, image or text resources.
Revise, and then revise again
Your ultimate goal is to achieve an application that concisely communicates what your project is, how it works, the need for it, and its expected outcomes. Always get a second set of eyes across it as your final step before hitting the big submit.
By following these ten tips, you will be well on your way to creating high quality submissions that have every chance of securing game changing funding! And with each application you successfully submit, you’ll also be elevating your organisation’s profile amongst funding bodies as one that is capable of great works.
Need a helping hand?
With our next 28 Days to Nailing Your Grants Bootcamp just around the corner, there’s no excuse to let grant writing pressures get the better of you!
From creating a strategic approach and gathering the data that will power your cases for funding, through to grant writing with impact (and everything in between), you’ll learn exactly how to confidently nail every grant opportunity… beginning with the application that you’ll start during your time with us! Register right here and you’ll also receive a bonus [and free] strategy session.
As a modern-day grants management agency, Grant’d is led by strategy specialist Janine Owen who has raised millions [and millions] for some of Australia’s best loved charities. Whether you’re seeking tailored grant solutions, grants education, or grant resources; the Grant’d team stands ready with the specialist tools and expertise that will help you unlock grant funding and elevate your world changing impact.