I’m going to share some key development and capital campaign tips I learned at a workshop at Camp McDowell, AL at the ANCA Summit. Impressively, they raised over $7.5 Million dollars, so they know what they are talking about.
First, it’s important to know there is a difference between development and fundraising. Fundraising or a capital campaign is part of development. Development is an ongoing activity that includes more than raising money. Development includes activities like prospect research, database management, gift recording, accounting, donor relationships, planning, goal setting and coordination. Fundraising is the time spent cultivating or soliciting donors. You need to do development before the fundraising campaign. Development is how you build an organization and is key to success. It can also be called “advancement”. Advancement is not about the money–it’s about the people and the relationship.
Who is Giving in America?
- Americans gave $389.05 billion in 2016, a 4.2% increase from 2015
- Corporate and Foundation giving increased by 3.5% each.
- In 2016 72% of gifts came from individuals, 15% from Foundations, 8% from bequests and 5% from Corporations
- Environmental and Animal Organizations experiences the largest increase – a 7.2% increase from 2015.
- 63 millions Americans or 25% of the adult population in America volunteer in 2016.
Try These 18 Brilliant Fundraising Tips
- Do your research. Know who your donors are.
- Thank the donors you have.
- Thank them within 24 hours. You can’t thank enough.
- For major donors (more than $5,000) an individual can only handle building relationships with 10 of them. You will need a team.
- People give to people. People give to vision. Have an organizational plan.
- Goals must be current, believable, realistic and salable.
- Volunteer leadership is key to success.
- Don’t ask for dollars, ask them to invest.
- Build relationships with donors face to face, not on the internet.
- Donors age 60 and over can donate out of retirement account to reduce taxes.
- Communicate seven times a year.
- Create a system. Use a database management tool.
- Benchmark what others are doing. Here’s a Donor Benchmark Report.
- Have a brainstorm lunch on who could give. Use Tech Soup.
- People give to their passion. Look for those that are giving.
- If board members are not giving, get them off the board.
- The hardest part is getting the appointment. Make a list of ten people you need to call and just do it.
- People who were never married and have no children can also give.
Here’s Why People Donate
- Emotion – they want to leave a legacy and have immortality.
- Sense of Belonging – brings satisfaction and personal recognition.
- Belief that it will make a difference.
- Belief in the mission and leadership of your organization.
- They were asked for a gift that matches their interest.
- People respond to personal solicitation, sometimes out of guilt or obligation.
- Giving by others attracts giving.
- True benevolence
Steps in the Capital Campaign
- Hire a consultant
- Create a list of prospects
- Complete a feasibility study
- Recruit a campaign chair
- Develop a campaign cabinet/committee & meet quarterly
- Review and finalize gift policies & procedures
- Choose/prepare a database to track donor information and gifts
- Draft a timeline
- Create a gift table/pyramid
- Create a marketing committee & set meetings
- Set weekly meetings for major gift officers
- Work the prospect list from largest to smallest donors
The Development Mantra
“People feel more intensely than they think. Where the heart leads, the mind will follow. But people give to people. And people require patience, nurturing, patience, loving, and patience.”
All thanks for these tips must go to Pamela H. Parker of Philanthropic Partners, LLC and Danielle Dunbar, Director of Mission Funding of the Episcopal Diocese of Alabama. Their workshop was brilliant.