10 Steps to Stronger Donor Engagement

03 Feb 2020 10:10 AM | Anonymous

The ILD Class of 2020 kicked off the new year with a January 31 session on major gifts, led by Matt Wasserman, principal and founder of MPW Strategies, and Patrick Gaines, chief development officer at Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver. The day ended with a bonus session on donor relations and stewardship led by Keri Kallaway, senior director, donor relations and gift services, at Children's Hospital Colorado Foundation.

From the major gifts session, here are Wasserman's ten steps to stronger donor engagement:

1. Prospect efficiently. Work with donors who will make major gifts!

2. Utilize a consistent, effective process. Don't handle each donor opportunity differently. Do what has the highest probability of producing high close rates

3. Use fundraising strategy that is compatible with how people behave. Your primary function is not to persuade and convince prospects. Don't use manipulative persuasion tactics.

4. Gain conditional commitment to do business at the beginning of the fundraising process. Don't waste time with prospects that have no commitment to give.

5. Determine the giving intentions of your prospects, including their capacity, the timing that works for them, and their decision-making process.

6. Earn your donors' trust and respect. Be your most authentic self.

7. Determine what your prospect wants and why. Move away from a sales presentation.

8. Start closing at the beginning of the engagement process. Gain the conditional commitment outright.

9. Try to eliminate the necessity to overcome objections. Have a thorough process that won't bring about objections.

10. Strive for constant improvement in process. Look to always make changes to improve the process.

Institute for Leaders in Development at University of Denver | University Hall 301 2197 S. University Blvd. Denver Colorado 80208 | ildcolorado@gmail.com 

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