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How to find your most passionate donors

Posted June 9, 2014 by Chris Bicknell

In a March 2012 interview conducted by Phyllis Freedman with Chuck Longfield, the founder of Target Analytics, these two veteran fundraisers discussed what kind of data can help you identify who is really passionate about your organization. Since passion leads to larger gifts and a much higher likelihood of a legacy gift, this is rather important for you to think about.

Chuck included a few words of caution:

  • “New donor trend lines have been down for 10 years. We can’t find new donors and we can’t keep them. We’ve been over-fishing. There aren’t enough fish in the ocean. We’re taking in fewer fish when we throw out these massive nets and the fish are scrawnier and we have to throw them back. We have a generational shift in play, too. WWII donors were loyal, Baby Boomers are skeptical.”

But he also pointed how you can identify donors who might be willing to give more:

  • It takes effort by the donor to secure a matching gift – when you have data telling you who got a matching gift and who didn’t, use it for segmentation.
  • Think about things you do for your favorite nonprofit: change your address, attend events, answer surveys or volunteer. Keep good data on those things and use it to steward and solicit accordingly.

Here at Little Green Light we agree with all of the points Chuck made in this interview. We’re pleased that our clients can follow his advice easily and with minimal fuss using our donor management system. We can help our clients collect and track critical data related to:

  • Wealth identifiers and wealth screening. For example we provide a convenient linkage to WealthEngine.
  • Coding and easily finding matching gift information, event attendance and, very importantly, volunteering information.
  • Documenting interactions with your constituents (CRM), thereby increasing the likelihood of retaining donors, especially those with the highest potential.

Please take a few minutes to browse this excellent interview and if you haven’t yet started using Little Green Light to help you with all of these tasks now is a great time!

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