top of page
  • Karen Osborne

Best of TOG: August Major Gift Countdown

Updated: Aug 25, 2020

As we start to gear up for the end of the year, here's a great post from Karen from our archives.

Labor Day will be here before you know it!

You have about a week to complete your August Major Gift Countdown to success.

  • Let your metrics lead the way. What worked well from January to now? Or from last June or August until now? Learn from your successes. What didn’t work? Why

    • Donor and volunteer retention for new donors, donors giving for two to four years, donors giving for five or more years

    • Upgrade rates

    • Yes rates (how many closed gifts compared to how many requested; what percentage of the requested amount actually given; how close to capacity)

  • Dust, re-tool, or create off your name-by-name table of gifts. Whom will you, a member of your team, your cadre of volunteers, solicit for a leadership or major gift between September and Thanksgiving? For how much? For what impact, outcome, purpose or project? What results are you anticipating?

  • Line up The Rights. Do you know, with confidence all of the Rights for each of the donors listed in your name-by-name table of gifts?

    • Right amount

    • Right purpose

    • Right solicitation team

    • Right donor participants

    • Right time

    • Right place

    • Right materials

  • Think through your strategic engagement. In order to INSPIRE a gift of that size, what strategic steps do you need to take BEFORE the solicitation conversation?

    • A strategic conversation to confirm on of the rights?

    • Contact with CEO, a mission staff member or volunteer?

    • An interactive tour

    • Stewardship of the last gift?

  • Whom on the list could you inspire to do more by connecting them to the impact of their last gift?

    • What stewardship have they received?

    • How long ago?

    • What can you do now that might inspire a joyous, generous yes

  • Look at your strategic fundraising plan. Re-tool this year’s tactical plan. Are all your goals SMART?

    • Specific

    • Measurable

    • Attainable

    • Results-focused

    • Timed

  • Make sure your planned events are worth doing and you’ve positioned them for success.  Clear goals for new donors, donor retention, gift upgrades, think, feel and do messaging from credible message bearers and most important, your follow-up plan.

  • Are your volunteers ready? Do they have fresh and compelling stories to tell? Have you inspired them? Have you solicited and stewarded them?

  • Have you thanked and prepared your internal partners – your team, mission staff and c-suite staff who helped you, who you want to help you going forward? Do they have fresh and compelling stories to tell? Have you inspired them?

  • Have you taken care of you? Did you take time off? Can you get off the grid for Labor Day weekend? Did you, can you find time to power down? You’ll need all of your energy, enthusiasm, smarts, and savvy to ensure a major gift success this fall.

52 views0 comments


bottom of page