Major GiftsA keystone of successful strategic fund development lies in your major gifts program. Many of the same steps you would take for general fundraising can be carefully replicated in your courtship and stewardship of major donor relations, but there’s more to it than that.

At the Bridge Consulting Group, we guide you through the best practices for developing, growing and sustaining major gifts, as well as how to use an effective donor management  system to keep track of your efforts. Keeping records of your moves helps you stay on target while recruiting major donors, while also gaining knowledge about which efforts have met with the most success.

Every successful major gift program traces back to the important steps of fundraising:

  • Identify – You will need to research current donors and create a plan to cultivate their investment
  • Interest – Through personal contact you will learn their passion for giving and how to connect that your mission and programs.
  • Information – Provide these donor prospects with the information that tracks with their passion.  Then, keep careful track of information about their values and assets and your interactions with them.
  • Involve – Offer opportunities for the donor prospects to become involves as a volunteer to programs, committees, board membership, etc.
  • Invest – Encourage the donor’s investment in a program that meets their needs/passions

As part of our strategic fund development efforts, an effective database of information will help at every step of the process. You risk making wrong moves and losing prospects if you do not keep track of what actions you have already taken.

Your moves management system should keep records of all communication. Each donor’s file should include information about:

  •   Dates of communication
  •   Topics discussed and plans made
  •   Info gained about assets, values, interests, experiences
  •   List of actions (phone calls, mailings, meetings)
  •   Upcoming birthdays, networking events, and other opportunities

How do we help you get started with your Major Gifts? It’s a collaborative effort for sure, but we are here as your trusted partners to ensure success;

  • We help you identify the initial list of major gift prospects
  • We work with you to design your initial cultivation plan
  • We help with the research required
  • We work with your team to spearhead the plan implementation
  • Monitor and evaluate all results

Your major gifts program will also need to include best practices of stewardship after a major donation. After the appropriate acknowledgements [up to 7 separate ones], the relationship should continue with proper stewardship such as invitations to volunteering opportunities and regular program updates. Eventually, the cycle will begin over again and you will have the information you need to begin anew.

Download our free eBook on Major Gifts & Planned Giving today!