Most people in the fundraising or nonprofit space are aware of the importance of major gifts. While these are not always the easiest to identify and secure, major gifts can be some of the most impactful donations to your organization each year.
Like major gifts from your donors, sponsorship dollars donated for fundraising events can result in rapid growth for your event and can make a major difference in the amount that your fundraiser donates – and thus, the success of your event.
Although major gifts and sponsorship for fundraising events are different in many ways, making both a part of your overall donation mix will result in a balanced “portfolio” and healthy fund for your nonprofit. Additionally, your success in securing either (or both) forms of these donations will vastly improve if you implement an effective process and strategy.
In this post, we are going to walk you through strategies you can use to identify and secure major gifts and fundraising event sponsorship. You’ll see that the strategies have many similarities!
Step One: Identification
Whether you are focusing on major gifts or fundraising event sponsorship, your first step will be to identify potential targets who will be willing to donate to your cause or nonprofit. Identification is a crucial step in the process and will ultimately set you and your team up for success in pursuing either major gifts or fundraiser sponsorship.
When considering major gifts, your identification process will be focused on your current donor base. Your current donors are a great place to start because they have previously shown interest in your nonprofit. In addition, you will already have some data on these donors as they have contributed to your organization in the past.
To begin your opportunity identification process, we would suggest looking at two different factors:
Donation Size – Those donors who have already contributed substantially to your organization are great candidates for major gifts as they may have the means and passion to support your cause. While looking at specific donor histories, look for donation patterns – has the donor’s contribution increased year over year? If so, you may be onto something!
Donation Frequency – While donation size is a great sign to use to find potential major gift donors, so too is donation frequency. Looking at your list of donors, you should have the capability to see how often your donors are contributing to your nonprofit. Those donors who have come back time and time again to support you are showing both their loyalty and passion for your cause, and that makes them perfect potential candidates for major gift-giving!