Donor Segmentation: How Models Can Drive Personalized Campaigns

customer segmentation models

Fundraising success comes down to well-timed and optimized asks. Donor segmentation can help you find the best prospects for your campaigns. Yet, segmentation is not an end in itself. Its impact grows when combined with donor segmentation models. These models can also increase personalization and engagement.

What is Donor Segmentation and How to Segment Donors

Donor Segmentation is the process of breaking donors into categories. For example, you can categorize them by their ability to give. Donor segmentation fundraising is different for every organization. To illustrate, a nonprofit could segment donors based on past giving. Yet another could choose to segment by wealth brackets.

Donor Segmentation Analysis

Segmentation analysis helps you find macro patterns in your database. This can help you understand what makes your donor base unique.  At this level, you can form macro segments based on geography, age-range, wealth score, and P2G.

For instance, your donor segmentation analysis could reveal that 60% of your donor base is over the age of 50. Your donors may have worked at large corporations. Over 45% may have an interest in local sports.

These details are crucial for you to see what makes your donor base unique. When you zoom in further, you may see that over 70% of people with these traits are regular donors. This then becomes an important segment for your advancement team to focus on.

WE Analyze can create such a model from your data. This donor look-alike model allows you to apply these patterns to your database. Doing this allows you to find more prospects who look like your chosen segment. Thus, donor segmentation analysis can also help to drive predictive prospecting. This includes finding look-alike prospects that match the profile of your best donors.

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Success from Look-Alike Model

For instance, Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) wanted to identify potential high-impact donors among a large prospect list and prioritize outreach to those constituents. WealthEngine created a donor look-alike model based on their best donors and then scored their existing prospect list using the model.

As a result, MMRF was able to connect with more high-impact donors in just two months.  In this period, they were able to gain 3x ROI on their campaign efforts.

Pleased with the results, Michael Hund, Director of Development has said:

“This is a revolutionary product that every single nonprofit should be using.”

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How You Can Increase Campaign Precision Through Models

You can categorize your macro segments further to refine your strategy. Custom models increase precision and enable you to predict giving.

Modeling goes beyond finding look-alikes. It can actually help you predict giving. For instance, WealthEngine’s custom models can forecast major gifts.

Donor Segmentation Models are not restricted to current members of your nonprofit. In fact, models can enhance fundraising at every stage in the donor lifecycle.

Segmenting your donor base based on lifecycle stage offers many advantages. You can identify current donors with major potential. Plus, you can win back former donors and prevent churn.

You can also use donor segmentation models to optimize your ask. This is especially important when it comes to donors who have high P2G scores. Optimizing your ask means that money hasn’t been left on the table that could have gone towards your cause.

Refined Donor Segmentation Also Enables Personalization

Furthermore, refined donor segmentation enabled through modeling helps you fine-tune your messaging. A personalized message that reflects customer interests is more likely to resonate.

Take your ideal donor segment for instance. You can divide them into smaller groups based on the type of sport that they follow. This enables you to not only tailor messages you send them but also create valuable experiences that match their interests.

Personalization (leads to)–> Message Resonance (which increases)–> Donor Engagement (Which results in)–>Better Lifetime Value.

This means that your donor remains connected to your organization and cause.  Moreover, LTV is a great metric for you to prioritize your prospects on. Prioritization means your budget and message focus on the most responsive segments. Thus, your efforts will see increased conversion at reduced costs.

Machine Learning Enhances Donor Segmentation Models

The more you use donor segmentation models, the better it is for conversion. WealthEngine’s machine learning capabilities ensure that our solution’s predictive algorithm is always improving. When you refresh your model every 15-18 months, you will have the most up to date prospect list for any campaign.

Increased precision leads to increased engagement. Moreover, increased engagement results in higher conversions and lower costs.

customer segmentation analysis

Super Charge Your Fundraising Campaigns

Learn more about how WealthEngine’s data science team can help. Gain deep insights to increase conversion rates through donor segmentation models.

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Nonprofit Leadership: Top 10 Skills that CDOs of Tomorrow Will Need

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The nonprofit landscape is ever-changing, yes. But, with major shifts coming in the next few years, Chief Development Officers (CDOs) or nonprofit leadership need to update the ways in which they approach their role.

What are these shifts? They relate to regulation, technology, and attitudes that come with new demographics that will be part of the workforce.

First, let’s look at 6 major trends that will affect the nonprofit sector over the next few years.

Nonprofit Leaders

6  Major Trends That Affect Nonprofit Leadership

  1. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning— Automation will be a major technological theme. Data will need to be refreshed, stored safely, and interpreted for insights. These will be enabled by AI ML.
  2. Privacy— Changing regulation across the world will make data harder to access. The public will have greater control over their own data. For this reason, organizations that rely on data will need a strategy to gain consent.
  3. Cybersecurity– With data privacy regulation on the rise globally, Personally Identifiable Information (PII) info will need greater protection. Thus, nonprofit leadership will need to budget for higher investments in cybersecurity.
  4. Changing Demographics at the Workplace— As Millennials & Gen Z dominate the workplace, work culture will undergo a massive shift. Further, these generations care about authenticity and solving problems on a global scale. They have non-linear career paths but want to work at organizations that stand for something meaningful.
  5. Social Media— This platform is here to stay. Channels may become more niche to serve the diverse interests of its users. They will also have a bearing on fundraising. Nonprofit leaders may see that giving is more fragmented, but there is a higher volume of smaller donations.“With the click of a ‘like button’, users will be able to make microdonations, a cent or even less.” says, Felix Hartmann, CEO of FundThis  
  6. Tax Laws— Changing tax laws may reduce gift size and frequency especially among sporadic donors.  Conversely, there will be an increase in the likelihood of Donor Advised Funds.

These trends affect the role of the Chief Development Officers in many impactful ways.  CDOs need to understand these trends so that they can get ahead of them. Thus, here are 10 top skills that nonprofit leadership will need in the near future.

10 Top Skills Needed to Stay Ahead of Nonprofit Leadership Trends

1. AI-Powered Data Modeling

Understanding the importance of data is only the first step. Nonprofit leaders should familiarize themselves with AI. Artificial Intelligence in data modeling, for instance, finds patterns among donors and prospects. Using wealth data analytics powered by AI gives you the ability to know the right “ask” amount for each potential donor.

2. Refine Precision Through Machine Learning

The old way of using your network, while still useful, is actually going to slow you down. Fortunately, this technology can speed things up. When you use analytics to generate insights regularly, machine learning can constantly improve your results.

For instance, AI allows you to find important patterns among your top donors. ML can refine these over time so that you have a precise formula for finding new donors just like your best ones.

3. Evolve from CRM to CDP

CRM is yesterday’s news, CDP is going to be the next big thing. CDP or a Customer Data Platform gives CDOs the ability to unify paid and owned data, according to McKinsey.

Thus, nonprofit leadership needs to empower their team by integrating wealth, demographic, lifestyle, and affinities within a centralized CDP. This way, your team spends more time talking to the right people than spending time on administrative tasks.

4. Keep Up with Privacy Laws

The implementation of GDPR was a game-changer in Europe. This is a sign of things to come. Nonprofit leadership needs to keep up with changing privacy laws. When user consent becomes necessary for data, you will need a strategy to ensure that your donors remain connected to your organization.

5. Speak the Language of Cybersecurity

With PII data requiring more security, it is increasingly important to understand data collection, storage, and sharing. Nonprofit leaders will need to hire an in-house data security expert or work with qualified consultants. Further, you will need to be equipped to speak their language. This will help you ensure that your infrastructure meets industry requirements.

6. Build Relationships with Wealth Managers

With the new tax laws, donor attitudes may change over time. CDOs who move quickly to leverage wealth data analytics and technology will gain a larger share of wallet from competing causes. Similarly, building relationships with financial service professionals can help familiarize prospects with your cause. With the support of financial service professionals, you can gain traction on Donor Advised Funds.

7. Embrace Diversity

Millennials in the US are the most diverse generation to date. Therefore, nonprofit leaders must understand and embrace diversity. This means that cultural sensitivity has to be built into your leadership skills. Moreover, individuals have different intrinsic and extrinsic motivations, understanding what makes each one tick will create a harmonious workplace.

8. Lead with Authenticity

Leading with authenticity and passion are big draws for teams consisting of younger generations. For instance, motivating younger employees to give their all to your cause will be easier when they can see how much you believe in it.

9. Be Open to Learning

When it comes to the proliferation of social networks and the increasing dependence on technology, a younger workforce can prove to be a great asset. As a nonprofit leader, it is important that you are open to reverse mentoring from younger employees with respect to these areas.

10. Leverage Social Media

The benefit of fragmented donations over social media is the volume of donations. As a nonprofit leader, you need to look beyond your core donor on social channels. Further, activating potential donors online helps you create awareness that leads up to an actual conversation.

Using engagement metrics, you can understand how often to connect with members of your community. For example, some people don’t mind regular communications and outreach efforts. Others may be happy to donate but prefer infrequent contact.

How We Can Help

WealthEngine9 or WE9 is built to prepare you and your organization for the future. We leverage AI/ML to deliver automation. In fact, WE Screen enables you to add 50+ data points on each donor- data on wealth, lifestyle, demographics, interests, and affinities. These can be added to your database at the click of a button.

What’s more? With WE9, our industry-specific CDP will enable you to unify your data and make operation seamless for your team. When younger employees come in with convoluted career paths, you can rest easy that the learning curve on the platform is negligible.

Our modeling solutions help you answer specific fundraising questions.

What does this mean for your team?

With our holistic and seamless solutions, your team will not need to spend their hours on administrative tasks or learning how to use several different platforms. As a result, they can spend more time gaining deeper insights into your donors and building long-term relationships.

Get Started Today

Contact us today to get started. Fill the form on this page and a WealthEngine rep will contact you soon.

Related Reading

Prospect Automation: Why Old Ways of Prospecting Will No Longer Deliver Results

Ethical By Design – Marketing in the Age of Personalization and Privacy

 

 

Identify & Combat Donor Fatigue to Build Long-Term Donor Relationships

donor fatigue

Ever wondered if Donor Fatigue is real? Spoiler alert: the answer is yes! In fact,  it can majorly obstruct the development of long-term relationships. Every nonprofit advancement team aims to create long-term engagement among donors. Engagement that sets donors on the path to major gifts, recurring donations, or even planned giving. In any long-term strategy, nonprofits have to be able to identify this phenomenon.

To that end, let’s analyze what it is and how you can combat it.

What is Donor Fatigue?

Donor fatigue is a phenomenon where your donors may gradually stop giving to your organization. They may also stop giving altogether. This may be due to a feeling of indifference or desensitization caused by too many asks.

Although the loss of connection may be temporary, if you don’t take the right steps, you may end up losing a valued donor forever.

The first step is to identify the causes of this phenomenon.

Top 6 Causes of Donor Fatigue

Donor fatigue results in desensitization or a feeling of being tapped out among your donor base. One or more of the following 6 factors can cause this:

1. Too Many Requests

One of the primary causes of donor loss through fatigue is receiving too many fundraising requests. Nonprofits believe in donor retention. Past behavior is usually a great indicator, so the instinct is to ask again.

When donors have already donated to your cause, and they continue to receive requests, they may begin to feel tapped out.

2. Poor Understanding of Propensity and Interests

Understanding donor propensity and interests should be one of the primary steps in your prospect research plan. For instance, a donor may have contributed to a disaster relief fund. This is an indicator that they are interested in humanitarian aid. However, it is best to proceed while being better informed.

They may have been inclined to give to that disaster because of the affected area. If they have lived in the affected area before and still know people that live there, that may have served as a motivator.

3. Generic Asks

Like poor understanding, sending generic asks can cause irreparable damage to the donor relationship. Asks can be generic in many ways. The actual cause may not be the right fit. Further, the ask can be a mismatch with donor capacity.

Even your chosen medium or message appear generic when you do not personalize communications.

4. Ill-Timed Asks

Your request’s timing can be a mismatch just as the medium or nature of the ask can be.

Recency is an issue: when you send requests soon after a donor gives, fatigue can set in. Furthermore, life stages are constantly changing. If your donors are paying college tuition or medical bills for family members, they might be less inclined to make a contribution.

5.  A False Sense of Urgency

When natural disasters occur, nonprofits send messages with a sense of urgency. This is expected.  However, over time, receiving such messages dilute the impact of your ask on donors.

Donors will feel less inclined to give if the actions required by them seem cumbersome.

6. Lack of Transparency in Communication

Another cause of donor fatigue is ambiguity. Sometimes messages do not clearly communicate the purpose and the impact of donations. In these instances, the lack of transparency hinders long-term relationship building.

Solutions to Combat Donor Fatigue

Fortunately, there are ways to avoid this phenomenon. Understanding your donor base and personalizing your outreach is paramount.

1. Regular Screenings

To understand your donors well, you need a holistic view of them. This means you have to look beyond their wealth. Wealth screening can show you your donor demographics, lifestyle, interests, and affinities.

Further, when you screen regularly, you can ensure that you are keeping up with important changes in donor wealth and life stages. This means that your asks are based not only gift capacity but also interest and inclination.

Brian Bishop, Director of Development at TurningPoint Ministries has said,

“(Screening)… allowed us to shift from relying solely on capacity-driven prospecting to become much more inclination-driven. Unless you’re paying attention and using a tool like WealthEngine, you’re going to miss people”

Therefore, regular screenings mean that you don’t overlook donors who are ready to give. Moreover, you don’t induce disinterest through ill-timed or generic asks.

You can automate your screening process through API integration. This way, every time a donor comes into contact with a touchpoint, screening data on them can be refreshed.

2. Donor Segmentation

Segmentation can also help you combat donor fatigue. Use a wealth score such as the P2G Score. This score can help you measure not only propensity but also capacity.

An understanding of propensity and capacity can help you segment donors into lists for your annual fund, major gift program and other types of fundraising.

When you approach the right donors for the right programs, results can be vastly different. For instance, a WealthEngine client found that asking for an extra $50 to their top 1% would generate $200,000 more in a year. That’s $1M in 5 yrs!

3. Actionable Insights

Your screening data can provide valuable insights. Analyze this data to find macro patterns in your donor base. For example, you may find that all your major gift donors share 4 common traits. They all live within 50 miles of your organization, they are all over 50, they all own luxury cars, and are all interested in reading.

These patterns can help you in two ways. First, they can give you a deeper understanding of what makes your donors respond. When you communicate in a way that resonates, there is less room for donor fatigue to set in. Second, when you know what kind of donors are likely to give major gifts, you can find more like them and retain them in the long run.

4. Modeling

You can take your insights a step further through modeling. Modeling uses machine learning technology. You can create a custom model that answers a specific question at your nonprofit.

In this instance, you can create a model for early detection of donor fatigue signs. This can help you adjust your strategy with donors who are at risk. For example, your model can assign a high score to anyone who has recently donated to your cause.

This score will indicate that they should not receive any more requests in the near future. By doing this, you avoid frequency and recency issues that result in non-responsiveness.

4. Personalization

When you have segmented your donors and identified those at risk, your engagement strategy can become much more personalized. Personalization can extend to your message, the medium, and frequency.

Using results from your analysis and modeling, you can identify exactly what makes a donor respond. A response means they are interested and engaged. For instance, you can find that some donors don’t mind up to 3 emails a month, but they won’t open emails about organizational news.

These learnings help you tailor your outreach in a way that donors are not put at risk.

5. Authenticity

Personalization drives a connection with your donors. However, it goes beyond addressing them by name in emails. Authenticity is a major factor when it comes to communications. When donors understand where their dollars have made an impact and where they have made a genuine difference, engagement levels are much higher.

When personalizing communication, it is important that the tailoring goes beyond cosmetic aspects. This means using urgency only when appropriate. It also means using a tone of voice that is reflective of your organization’s culture.

6. Donor Involvement

Another key method to maintain interest is to actually involve donors in the activity at your organization. You can seek their advice on projects or fundraising programs.

Furthermore, you can also tap into their inner circle to find their close connections. Donors can help make introductions to their contacts. These contacts, in turn, could become board members or donors themselves. When donors are involved and their counsel is sought, they feel a deeper connection with your organization. This connection is strengthened so they maintain a long-term association with you.

inner circle

How WealthEngine9 Supercharges Your Long-Term Strategy

WealthEngine9 or WE9, our newest release, is transforming the fundraising landscape. Explore how our Engagement Science™ speeds up the way you screen, analyze, find insights and predict outcomes through modeling.

Request Demo

Learn More

Recurring Donors: Why you need them and how to get them

Capital Campaigns: Fundraising Strategy for Nonprofits

 

After Giving Tuesday Has Come and Gone

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Giving Tuesday (or your Local Giving Day) has come and gone. While your “heavy lifting” is done and you’ve raised some money, what can you do to leverage these efforts? 

WealthEngine can help. WE have put together a great resource to help you in the wake of Giving Tuesday.

Download our free tip sheet, After Giving Tuesday Checklist, and get started on maximizing your year end fundraising efforts. 

Giving Tuesday Tips: Thinking outside the box

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Giving Tuesday. Colorado Gives Day. One Island Giving Day.  Arizona Gives Day. New York Gives Day. Illinois Day of Giving. Giving to the Max Day. All – and there are many more —  are founded with a single goal of bringing awareness to the importance of philanthropy and giving back to the local community.

The Giving Tuesday idea is simple, piggybacking on the post-Thanksgiving sales cycle of “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday”. The other state-wide giving days simply pick a date – ranging from sometime in October to early December – and are generally championed by a community foundation which provides an online portal and often, an incentive fund.

So what can you do to make the most of this? After all, many nonprofits rely on year-end giving for a large portion of their philanthropic budget. 

Some simple ideas:

  1.  Plan ahead. It’s just about impossible to mount a successful giving day effort without beginning to plan as early as spring or early summer. 
  2. Pick a financial goal. Do you want to raise $10,000 or $50,000? More?? Make sure the goal is feasible and not pulled out of thin air.
  3. Create a communications plan using all possible channels: your newsletter, social media, your website, your blog and email blasts.
  4. Do you have an online giving portal on your website? It’s essential.
  5. Segment your donors and prospects by their P2G score (lower is better) and giving history.
  6. Make it personal. Engage your board and other key volunteers to send the message to their friends and colleagues.
  7. Plan a live event and on the day, tweet out your results as they come in. Make sure it’s fun and festive. If you can get one of your corporate donors to help underwrite it or if you can secure donations of food and drinks, so much the better.
  8. Be thankful. Show your gratitude using all your communication channels and share your results. Consider a simple You Tube-type video communicating the thanks of your team and those you serve.
  9. Steward your donors, new and old. Be sure to get all gift acknowledgement forms out within 48 hours. Set aside an entire day to do so and make it a team effort.

For more tips, as well as some planning guides, visit your sponsoring community foundation’s website, https://www.givingtuesday.org/organizations#block–the-complete-toolkit , www.razoo.com/givingdays and http://givingdayplaybook.org/planning — a service of the Knight Foundation

Making a list, checking it twice

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Gearing up for the end-of-year campaigns? Let’s talk about your list.
 
As the fall season kicks into high gear, most nonprofits are also gearing up for the best time to reach out to donors for those holiday and year-end campaigns. On average, most nonprofits receive at least 40% of their annual donations during this time and for some, that percentage is nearly 70%.
 
Getting properly prepared to maximize year-end fundraising efforts and reach donors is the first step and that starts with good data. According to direct marketing experts, there are three critical elements to a direct mail or email appeal: the list, the design and the copy. The quality of a list can make or break a campaign. It is the biggest and most important investment in your campaign. Caring for a list should be a top priority when it comes to fundraising. But how do you care for a list?
 
Good question. On a regular basis, whether you choose to do it annually, quarterly or more often, audit the database to be sure data is being entered consistently and accurately. A few simple questions about the data can get you started in the right direction. Are salutation fields being populated properly? Is giving history correct and up-to-date? Are returned mail and email bounce backs noted and updated where possible? You might even consider running a spell check on the entire file. Based on the outcome, consider creating an internal “data stylebook” – for more, download our Data-Driven Annual Campaign workbook here.
 
Next, when was the last time you ran a National Change of Address (NCOA) on your mailing list? Did you know WE can help with that? With our WE Clean product, you’ll not only get information on the 10-20% of your constituents who have moved in a given year, but email addresses, phone number and a deceased append. The price is literally pennies per record – and, you’ll be saving a lot of additional money on returned mail and print overages.
 
To help get you started on getting your list ready, take our Data Readiness Challenge by downloading this free data hygiene checklist.
 
If you want more information on data appends, contact WealthEngine today.

Turn Your Event Participants into Donors

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As summer draws to an end and we prepare for fall, we are about to enter the season of “-Thons”.  Hosting a fundraising walk-a-thon, bike-a-thon, dance-a-thon, swim-a-thon, read-a-thon or other fundraising –thon can be a great way to build support for your cause, identify new prospects, build a relationship with new donors, and build your base of support. Whether you work for a charity, hospital, university, theater or advocacy organization, now is the time for development offices to create a plan for how to turn event participants into donors. Turning event participants into donors can be easily done, but requires careful communication and a moves management strategy.

Here are five steps to consider when planning your event to find new event participants, identify fresh prospects, and maximize your relationship with existing event participants:

1. Promote your event via social media to find new participants.

Don’t put on the same event for the same participants who are donating year after year! Find new constituents to invite using social media. By casting a wide net you will find prospects who are interested in your cause or activity and, with the proper follow through, they can be turned into donors.

Publicize your event on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. Be sure to include a call to action with every post, either a way to request more information or to register directly on your website.

Have your loyal supporters and advocates publicize your event for you to ensure it is being viewed by as many eyes as possible. By asking existing event supporters and past participants to share the event via their own social networks, they are giving your event a credible voice by publicly showing their support and also finding you new participants (and new potential donors!).

2.) Build out your invitation list and find new high potential prospects to participate.

As you build out your event invitation list, consider ways to expand your universe to include more high potential prospects. Be sure to leverage board relationships, and consider tools that will inform you of who in your board’s circle of friends might participate, as you work to strategically develop this list.  Consider new avenues to pursue as you market the event broadly, such as local interest groups and clubs.

Questions to ask yourself might include:

  • How do I find new constituents with high giving potential that might be interested in my event?
  • Which are the most capable prospects to invite to our event?
  • Who do our board and other VIPs know that may respond to a personal invitation to our event and who should ask for their participation?

3.) Screen event participants before and after your event.

It is important to review your event participant list both before and after your event. This ensures that you know the financial capacity of participants and that no wealthy prospects slip through the cracks.

As you get to know your list inside and out and identify the participants with the highest giving potential, develop a plan for your high potential prospects. Consider inviting them to pre- or post- event VIP activities, such as breakfasts or post-event celebrations. If the idea of planning an event around your event is too much for you, consider sending invitations for meetings or “grabbing coffee” a week or two after the event itself. Personal follow through with each high–potential prospect is a must to create ongoing engagement and to understand the individuals’ motivations and interests.

4.) Use metrics as you wrap up your event for the year.

Applying analytics to your event list for both segmentation and tracking is crucial as you wrap up the event and before you move on to your next big challenge – the ask. Metrics to consider include:

  • Event Return on Investment (ROI)
  • Cost to Raise a Dollar (CRD)
  • Cost per person for event
  • # of gifts received from event
  • % of giving from event
  • Dollars contributed from event
  • Average event gift size
  • Event cost

Be sure to segment your event list to determine who needs immediate follow up, based on his/her wealth profile. Follow steps in our Growing Individual Gifts workbook for best practices on how to set up a meeting to build a relationship with potential donors. Strike while the iron is hot to stay in touch and build a relationship.

5.) Once you know enough, make the ask!

Before asking your prospect for a substantial gift, there are a few questions you want to be sure are already answered:

  • What is this donor’s interest or passion and where does it align with our mission?
  • What is the project they will be most interested in funding?
  • What is the correct ask amount for this donor? This should be in harmony with the project or need you are seeking funding for, as well as the donor’s capacity to give.
  • Who should be involved in the solicitation? The president or CEO? A board member? A friend or colleague?
  • Is this the right time to ask? Should we wait until after the recession is over? After their pledge to the [insert charity] building fund is over? After their children are out of college?
  • Who else may be involved in the decision to give? A spouse? Other family members? Financial or tax advisors?
  • How does s/he want to be recognized for a gift? Knowing their stewardship desires before asking for the gift ensures you handle any gift negotiations appropriately, and also that you accomplish post-giving appreciation and recognition in the most meaningful way for the donor(s).

When you know the answers to these questions in advance, you will be making a solicitation that is hard to say no to.

For more information on growing your development program, download Growing Individual Gifts: An Analytical Approach to Data-Driven Success

Consider the Whole Prospect Picture: Going Beyond P2G and Estimated Giving Capacity

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When conducting research on your prospects it’s important to work efficiently to identify who best to cultivate. If you’re using WealthEngine you more than likely use our Propensity to Give (P2G) score and Estimated Giving Capacity (EGC) to help segment and prioritize your donors and prospects. That’s fantastic! And we absolutely encourage you to use these. 

But there are many other scores and data within the prospect profile that can further enhance your knowledge of the individual. If you aren’t making use of these additional scores, you may be missing out on valuable information about your prospect.

Let’s take a look at a few examples of WealthEngine scores you should also be utilizing.

Cash on Hand:
This modeled score predicts the amount of available funds that are readily accessible for the household; such as checking, savings, and money market accounts. This score can also be used as a proxy for discretionary income.

If your fundraising program is in need of immediate funding for a particular project or initiative, your prospects with higher Cash on Hand range may be some of your best targets.

It can also be helpful when in a gift conversation with a prospect who has not yet made a major gift. For example, you know that their EGC is $1M-$4.9M, but their Cash on Hand is $50K-$99K. Iit may be more realistic to make an initial ask for $50K and build the relationship further from there.

Influence:
This score identifies an individual’s influence in the community based on how many boards (corporate or philanthropic) they are affiliated with. This is done on a scale of 1 to 4, corresponding with quartiles.

Your prospects with a high influence score of 1 or 2 are individuals who are engaged with a larger group of constituents in your community and likely have more corporate and philanthropic connections. This could be helpful if, for example, you wanted to look for some new potential board or committee members. This score could enable you to select and target more dynamic board members who are well-connected.

GuideStar Foundations-High/Medium Quality of Match:
Individuals who serve on boards of private foundations are a somewhat elite group of individuals. Whether it is their own family foundation, or they have been invited to serve on the board of a private or corporate foundation, both are equally significant in displaying that individual’s commitment to philanthropy.

GuideStar Directors-High/Medium Quality of Match:
Delving into the types of organizations where your prospects serve on boards can you give a keen insight in to the causes and charities that they are most passionate about. They have agreed to give their time to serve on a board of this organization, hence, likely displaying a deep commitment to this type of cause and mission.

WE want you to be successful in your fundraising and provide you with detailed profiles so you have a complete picture of your donors and prospects. With our wide range of ratings and scores we give you a sense of not just an individual’s propensity and capacity, but also their financial position, potential influence, and philanthropic interests. Remember to dig deeper into your profiles to learn more about your prospects, which will likely in turn, provide greater returns!

For further information on segmenting and prioritizing donors and prospects view our webinar Best Practices in Prospect Management for Year-End Fundraising Efforts.

Five Keys to Successfully Involve Volunteers in Fundraising

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Involving volunteers in nonprofit fundraising can be challenging and at times downright tricky, especially with the recent decline in the volunteer rate. This makes it all the more important to identify the right volunteers and have strategies in place to retain them. To be successful involving volunteers in fundraising, organizations should consider these key factors:

  • Select the right volunteer for the right job:  Volunteers want to participate in activities in which they are comfortable and will achieve success.  Volunteers can participate in a variety of fundraising activities, including annual campaigns, special events, major gift or capital campaigns or corporate and foundation relations.
  • Provide the volunteer with the tools and training they need for success: It is the staff person or consultant’s job to make certain the volunteer’s job is achievable by providing the needed resources.  Volunteers should be trained in the art and science of fundraising.  Consider inviting volunteer fundraisers to attend industry conferences as well as providing your own, internal training and policies.
  • Involve the volunteer in meaningful, productive activities:  No volunteer wants to do “busy work;” get an intern to do that.  Help your volunteers feel good by giving them impactful opportunities.  When volunteers see the genuine difference they can make, they will continue to be passionate ambassadors for your mission.
  • Track volunteer activities and provide assistance when needed:  Volunteers cannot be trained and forgotten.  Staff must monitor their activities and assess when they need support and when they need assistance or reassignment. 
  • Steward volunteers appropriately: Your volunteers may not want a lot of public recognition, but they do want to be thanked appropriately.  A personalized thank you, lunch with a member of the leadership team, a volunteer recognition event, and/or ongoing communications about the impact of their work will go a long way towards securing support and growing relationships.

If all of this sounds like a big investment of time and resources, you may be wondering, “Wouldn’t it be easier just to do it myself?”  The answer to that is “maybe.”  It may well be easier to do it yourself, but it will not be as effective.  Volunteers bring some special qualities to the table that we as professional staff cannot compete with. They provide:

  • Credibility for the organization just because they are unpaid “volunteers”
  • Peer networks that are all potential supporters of our organizations
  • Skills and talents from other areas of their lives, like business and professional certifications
  • Creativity and enthusiasm that can breathe new life into your operations

Below are resources to help get you started on successfully involving volunteers:

Download Growing Individual Gifts: An Analytic Approach to Data-Driven Success more information on engaging volunteers.

The Data-Driven Annual Fund Part 3: Reporting and Return on Investment

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Just as it is with a capital campaign, it’s important to track and measure your annual fund progress, allowing you to pivot and adjust as needed. Evaluate the success (or not such a success) using reports that focus on previously agreed upon metrics. 

Remember, good metrics are:

  • Relevant – they fit with the organizational and campaign goals and objectives
  • Measurable – they are quantifiable and data can be collected in order to provide reporting
  • Actionable – they allow for corrective action to be taken as needed

Tracking the right metrics can only be an asset to your organization, but what if you’re not sure which metrics to track?

We developed The Data-Driven Annual Fund to help organizations with data understanding and use; strategies for segmentation, solicitation and stewardship of donors and prospects; and measuring and analyzing fundraising ROI and other key metrics.

Part 3: Reporting and Return on Investment discusses evaluating annual fund results and measuring the return on investment. It covers, in deeper detail, metrics, ROI, and benchmarking. Examples and templates are provided so can get started right away.

Download The Data-Driven Annual Fund Part 3: Reporting and Return on Investment.

In case you missed them, download Part 1 and Part 2