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How to Handle a Sudden Surge of New Donors: 3 Tips

Most nonprofits have a standard process in place for building a relationship with a new donor. It’s likely that your organization does too.

The flow is probably relatively standard: someone donates, they receive a thank you, they’re added to your email stream, they might receive an event invite, etc., etc.

However, many nonprofits are not as well-equipped to handle when they have a sudden surge of new donors. Whether you have a campaign go viral or there’s an event that causes a peak in interest in your cause, your nonprofit should be prepared to properly steward all new donors, even if they come in bulk.

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By donorsearch

Fundraising Strategy: The Gift Range Chart [With Templates!]


The success of your fundraising campaign relies on whether or not your nonprofit has put in the time to develop a comprehensive, data-driven fundraising strategy. With the right fundraising plan in place, the more likely you’ll be able to extend the right asks to
reach likely donors and achieve your fundraising goals.

The secret to an excellent fundraising strategy? Consider making the most of a gift range chart.

Commonly used during the feasibility study phase of capital campaigns, gift range charts are useful tools for fundraising campaigns of any size. With this simple tool, you’ll learn exactly what it will take to successfully reach your fundraising goals. 

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By chris

[Guest Post] Avoid the Rabbit Hole! When to Stop Searching

This blog focuses on the world of prospect research and various related fundraising topics. To diversify our subject matter, we like to feature the work of our friends and colleagues in the community. Join me in welcoming Jennifer Filla, the CEO of the Prospect Research Institute and President of Aspire Research Group LLC. Please enjoy her post! 

Avoid the Rabbit Hole! When to Stop Searching

How many times have you heard a prospect research professional tell a story about how she dug just a little deeper out of curiosity and found the key piece of information that her gift officer used to make a successful solicitation?

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By chris

5 Ways Prospect Research Can Help You With Donor Solicitation

Prospect research is a valuable tool that many nonprofits use to learn more about their donors, their prospects, and their giving patterns.

  • It helps fundraisers determine who to invite to a fundraising event.
  • It allows nonprofits to discover hidden connections between donors and potential major gift contributors.
  • It helps nonprofits fill in the blanks with their existing, and perhaps incomplete, donor data.

But one of the main ways that prospect research serves nonprofits is with donor solicitation. Whether you’re asking for donations via email, on the phone, or in person, prospect research can help give you the edge when making those appeals.

Here are five ways prospect research can help with donor solicitation.

A sneak peek of what we’ll be covering in this article:

  1. Fill in the blanks.
  2. Segment your asks.
  3. Know how much to ask.
  4. Determine other giving opportunities.
  5. Find major gift donors and planned giving donors.

1. Fill in the blanks

It’s going to be tricky to ask for a donation if you don’t have a prospect’s phone number, email address, or home address.

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By chris

Perfect Your Prospect Profile Templates [Free Examples]

Developing prospect profiles on your various high-quality giving candidates is a necessary step in managing a fluid transition from prospects to donors.

Your prospect profiles will contain all of the relevant data you gathered during the screening process. With comprehensive profiles, your team can easily transition prospects from one person to the next, without risking miscommunication and information getting lost in the shuffle.

The prospect researcher is responsible for completing as much information as possible before passing on the details to a gift officer. Once the gift officer begins the donor cultivation process, he or she then tracks any additional input and changes as the relationship develops. That way, if a new officer were to step into the role, he or she would be automatically brought up to date.

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By chris

The 3-Step Guide to Handling a Prospect Researcher Staff Transition

Article written by Sarah Tedesco, Executive Vice President at DonorSearch.

Heraclitus said it best when he stated, “Change is the only constant.” Although it is not always welcome, the sooner we accept and embrace change, the better our lives are. That platitude, though easier to take in theory than practice, certainly applies to the way that organizations handle staff transitions.

Nonprofits and educational institutions, just like any other type of employer, have to deal with important staff members leaving and the ramifications of those exits.

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By chris

5 Big Benefits of Fundraising with Wealth Screening

This post was written by Jeri Alcock CFRE, West Coast Sales Manager at DonorSearch.

If you could accurately predict the future you’d be a very successful person. You’d spend your days trading stocks at the exact right moment and catching kittens just as they fall from trees. You could be a crime-preventing, disaster-avoiding, money maker.

Such seemingly far-fetched dreams.

We might not have found a way to predict the world’s future, but we have uncovered a way for fundraisers to predict donors’ futures — prospect research.

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By chris

[Guest Post] Major Gift Study Shows Prospect Research Matters

This blog focuses on the world of prospect research and various related fundraising topics. Today, we’re happy to welcome a contribution from Amy Eisenstein, ACFRE, regarding the recent report, Mastering Major Gifts. Please enjoy!

Major Gift Study Shows Prospect Research Matters

Did you ever stop to ask yourself, “Does prospect research really matter? And, is it worth the cost?”

A new study of more than 660 small and mid-sized nonprofit organizations says YES!

Dr. Adrian Sargeant and Amy Eisenstein, ACFRE, set out to answer the question: Can small and mid-sized organizations (with budgets of $10 million or less) really raise major gifts? And if so, how?

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By chris

3 Determiners of Donor Giving Capacity

Although most of us wish it were a science, determining donor giving capability is more of an art form.

Prospect research reveals pieces of data about donors and then does the difficult task of analyzing what those data points mean. That result, a prospect research output, is donor giving capability.

It is determined by three factors:

  1. Connection to Your Cause
  2. Philanthropic Propensity
  3. Wealth Markers

Some researchers start and end with wealth markers, which is a real detriment to giving capability accuracy.

In this article, we’re going to give you the lowdown on all things donor giving capacity, which includes:

  1. A discussion of the three determiners of donor giving capacity.
  2. An investigation into the accuracy of capacity scores.
  3. A summary of major gift capacity scores.

Let’s open with point one, the three determiners.

Think of the giving capacity determiners as legs on a tripod, all necessary and all doing their part. 

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By chris

[Guest Post] How to Utilize Social Insights for Prospect Research

DonorSearch always aims to provide the best content available regarding prospect research and the broader nonprofit space. As such, we welcome guest contributors occasionally to mix things up here at our blog and provide new perspectives. Today, we’re happy to share a post by Solina Powell of EverTrue.

How to Utilize Social Insights for Prospect Research

While some workplaces frown upon employees spending their time on sites like Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook, those working in prospect research should be encouraged to invest their time in these platforms.

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