Latest posts by Josh Robertson (see all)
- Giving Tuesday 2017: Highs and lows - December 6, 2017
- Donor warming: major and planned giving for the modern advancement team - February 9, 2017
- Major and planned giving for the modern advancement team - November 4, 2016
The second in a four-part series on how institutions and nonprofit organizations can re-imagine how to identify, warm, and qualify major giving and planned giving prospects, along with how to analyze the success from those efforts. Read part 1 here.
Part 2: Keeping your major gift prospects warm
You have donors with propensity to give and you have donors with predicted wealth. As we discussed in the first blog in this series, when those two attributes combine you have what many consider to be the perfect major giving prospect. For those entering or in a campaign, you likely have identified a large new cadre of major gift prospects that you hope and expect are primed for making a transformational gift.
So now it’s time to assign a major gift officer and begin qualifying this large pool of new major giving prospects through personal outreach…or is it? There are two roadblocks that we have to overcome before we embark upon the engagement and qualification calls that are part of donor warming:
- Donor education about major giving: Most major giving prospects will have a long history of giving and may be inclined to continue giving. That said, past communication from your organization may not be conveying your transformational gift opportunities. Educating these loyal donors is key before any qualification call.
- Major gift officer portfolio size: While having a large group of identified prospects can seem like a great problem to have, the reality is a large group of new prospects with no history of making major gifts can very easily fall under your gift officer radar. These new opportunities aren’t likely going to rise to the top of a major gift officer list of donors to engage, especially when they are trying to close gifts from proven major donors. Commonly, these prospects are also removed from at least some of the annual giving appeals, which means a group of proven donors can begin to languish, ignored, without the same level of outreach that they have come to expect from your organization. Big gift officer portfolios, instead of opportunity, can spell disaster.