Year-End Tip #1: In-Person Meetings

By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA

Many nonprofits receive 40 percent or more of their annual fundraising in the final weeks of the year. Start planning now – don’t wait until it’s too late.

I have a few really hot tips for you about year-end giving, but first, here’s the data supporting the tips. By sharing these first, my tips will be self-evident.

  • Charitable gifts were up 3% last year, and wealthy individuals were responsible for most of the increase.
  • Baby Boomers are today’s major donors. They comprise only 34% of all donors, but are giving 43% of the money.
  • 64% of all charitable gifts are made by women, and older women are more likely to give and give more than their male counterparts.
  • 89% of high net-worth individuals volunteer with nonprofits.

Tip #1: In-Person Meetings

Top on my list, I’m still a big fan of selecting a group of donors, 25-30, major or otherwise, for in-person meetings in the next few weeks. Call me old fashioned, but human beings still prefer personal attention. The point of the meeting is to provide an update about your agency, listen to their thoughts and concerns, share with them their past giving history (most donors have little to no recollection of their cumulative giving), and ask for a year-end gift within a certain range – usually a $5,000 gap between the low and high number relative to each person’s capacity to give. Bring a pledge form with you to seal the deal, or send one immediately following the meeting. If the donor has to get back to you, set a date to call and respect their need. By having these meetings you are caring for and nurturing your top givers, and that is a superb thing to do indeed. Personal meetings are most favored by the boomers because they like personal attention and to be kept informed.

Now may be a good time to review this past blog post: Preparing For A Major Gift Meeting.

We welcome your comments about this post on the LAPA blog.

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