The internet and plucky little requests for support have online giving up year-over-year. What doesn’t happen as much online are major gifts. You know, the kind that require a relationship with the donor over a period of time that would lead them to want to engage really, really deeply with your organization…usually by way of cutting a check or parting with shares of stock. Not by clicking the ‘donate now’ button.
What, you might ask, does this mean for messaging to these potential major donors? What can we say that invites engagement? That introduces the idea that, at some point, they might want to consider moving all the way up the engagement ladder to the ‘major donor’ wrung. And how do we say it?
Here’s some research that suggests alternative approaches to major donor engagement:
- Major donors respond to engagement by board members and people they know
- Major donors frequently seek out opportunities to shape the direction of organizations they support
- Consider appropriate volunteer opportunities an intermediate step on your major donor ladder. Turns out donors of substantial means give to organizations they gift with their time
Of course, this research applies to many other donors as well (AND you are, of course, showering all of our donors not just major donors with love year-round, right?), but these approaches may be particularly effective with major donors.