I met someone over the weekend who reminded me of this guy – the most interesting man in the world.

He said thought-provoking things. He described his work with passion and zest. He regaled me with stories about mountain climbing. But he never once asked anything about me and I lost interest in our conversation pretty quickly.

It’s not that I’m self absorbed (ok maybe that’s up for discussion). But — stick with me now — no one likes a one-sided conversation.

The lesson here for non profit communicators? No amount of amazing stories can make up for not asking your donors about their interests and passions too.

Are you talking at your donors — much like this gentleman talked at me? If so, they will probably lose interest despite all your incredible stories about stopping elephant poaching or helping family farmers stay on their land.

Show that you care about your donors’ interests. Ask them questions. Customize your content. Segment your list by behavior. That’s what will keep your relationship thriving.