This post was written by Bill Tedesco, CEO of DonorSearch.
Measuring your performance is a crucial step that nonprofits must take to succeed.
There’s no better way of isolating and troubleshooting any ongoing problems. And worry not, there’s no shortage of methods of measuring performance.
They’re called fundraising success metrics here, but they are also often referred to as key performance indicators (KPIs). These metrics are the analytical tools nonprofits need to continue raising more and more funds.
I know what you might be wondering…is this going to be a wordy, complex discussion of a very legal-heavy topic? The answer is no!
We will be covering that topic that has yet to be named, but this post aims to explain some of those complexities in a manner that is digestible for a layman. There are academic papers for the intricacies of planned giving ethics. This post is for people who are newly and/or casually involved with planned giving and need an introduction to ethical questions associated with such programs.
“The future depends on what we do in the present.”
No other fundraising method quite captures the essence of that quote like planned giving does.
Moving past the basic definition of the term, deeper complexity enters the mix and it goes from a concept that everyone can grasp to a lot of technical talk, legal jargon, and financial language. It’s still great for fundraising and highly recommended, but your organization is going to need someone on hand to translate all the complexities.
As you venture into the world of planned giving, there’s a lot to consider.
Defining what your program will look like starts with your launch. During the early phases of your program and the ongoing process of running it, you’ll be looking for ways to optimize your efforts.
Look no further than this page.
Like with any fundraising program, you’ll need a strong team. If your organization can afford to do so, it is recommended that you hire a planned gifts officer.
Even if you cannot hire someone solely for the role, at least have a member of your development staff take the lead. In the early stages in particular, you’ll need one person to guide your efforts, and a complete team to make those planned giving dreams a reality.
There’s no planned giving program without planned giving marketing. Too few people know about planned giving opportunities for your program to skate by with minimal promotions.
It’s important that your planned giving marketing efforts both educate donors about this unique giving opportunity and showcase the value of donating these high-impact gifts.
To get started, we’ll discuss these 7 top strategies for planned giving marketing:
Building anything from the ground up takes serious effort and endurance. There is no way to snap your fingers and make things happen.
You need the proper tools, materials, and know-how to take an idea from the abstract to reality. This is true of real life construction, and it is true of program development.
Your planned giving program will be beneficial. It can be a huge success. You just need to begin with the right building plan.
Start strong and stay strong.
They tell you that you need to walk before you run. Those same people caution you to look before you leap. What do these expressions have to do with planned giving?
What direction are you steering your nonprofit? Successful nonprofits adjust based on the past, actively work in the present, and strategize for the future. All in a day’s work.
Clearly, those three components are much easier to talk about than to execute. If your organization wants to do more than talk, it has to steer its efforts towards programs that account for all three of those past, present, and future efforts.
Launching a planned giving program is one such direction your nonprofit can take. A planned gift is a gift that is decided on in the present and given in the future. Supporters who donate planned gifts often allocate them in wills or trusts.
Planned giving is an easy enough term to grasp. A donor makes an arrangement for a future gift in the present, most often in a will. Planned and giving are both words we regularly hear, so we can automatically deduce a meaning behind the combination.
Once you get past the fundraising method’s basics though, that’s where the language gets a bit more complicated.
Prospect research can seem daunting and overwhelming. There are a ton of resources out there, but there is not a lot of guidance.
Maybe you’re ready to get started with prospect screening, or maybe you’ve been in the game for a while and you’re curious about any tools you might have missed. Either way, this list will help.
Below you’ll find a compilation of 21, yes, 21, game-changing prospect research tools and resources.
For your convenience, we’ve divided all 21 prospect research tools and resources into categories of three.