Getting a Major Gift? Double it… or More!

Randy McCabe October 6, 2015 Nonprofits

If you’re a development director for a nonprofit organization, getting word that you’ve just won a major gift is an exciting day.  Just thinking of the wonderful impact it can have on your organization and those you serve is exciting.  It’s the equivalent of making a big sale in business or winning a critical game in sports.  Worthy of celebration.

But what if I suggested that if you’re strategic about what you do with that gift you could double it, or even more!

A major gift is strategic because in addition to providing your organization with a big shot in the arm, it can also help create momentum that has the ability to ultimately double or triple the original gift, possibly even more.  Instead of simply celebrating the major gift and putting it to work wisely, you can turn the gift into more by creating a Matching Gift Fundraising Appeal by making the gift contingent on donors matching it.  Or make it go even further by asking another major donor prospect to match the original gift, and then take the new total out to your donor base and let them know every gift they give will be worth double because it will be matched up to the grand total of the major donor’s gifts.

Here’s an example:  A Major Donor makes a $100,000 gift.  Idea A is to create a Matching Gift Appeal through mail and email to give your donors the opportunity to make their gift double up to $100,000.  Your donors will be inspired by the major gift and will help you turn the $100,000 gift into $200,000.  Idea B is to ask another major donor prospect to make a $100,000 matching gift contingent on raising $200,000 from the broad donor base to match the original total from the two major donors.  Assuming the organization is providing a valuable service, and the appeal focuses on meaningful stories of changed lives, your donors will be inspired by  the momentum from the major donors and recognize the impact that doubling the already significant gifts will have, and help you turn $100,000 into $400,000.

Now, that would be something worth celebrating!