Top 8 Nonprofit Major Gift Asking Blunders

NonProfit PRO

Have you ever blundered into disaster asking for a major gift? Donor Relationship Management Face-to-face Fundraising Major Gifts Major Gift Ask Major-giftA blunder is a careless mistake.

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How to Get Over Your Fear of Asking Donors for a Gift

NonProfit PRO

Many fundraisers have inquired about asking donors for gifts, and more specifically, how to get over the fear of it. Major Gifts Donor giftsVery simply, there is only one way to get over that fear.

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What Makes Wealthy Donors Tick?

NonProfit PRO

As nonprofits become more dependent on larger donors, the more fundraisers know about them, the better. Donor Demographics Major Gifts Donors fundraising Major-gifts Wealthy donors

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7 Steps New Major Gifts Fundraisers Should Take

NonProfit PRO

I believe that, over the next 10 years, major gifts fundraising will grow rapidly and become more sophisticated and donor-centered. So, here are some things to think about if you are new to major gifts fundraising.

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How Care and Nurture Turned Into a Big Gift

NonProfit PRO

Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts Planned Giving Donor-relationship Gift GivingIt's critical for nonprofits to stop and think about how they can pour themselves into people’s lives and help them fulfill their interests and passions.

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15 Questions to Go Deeper with Your Donor

NonProfit PRO

To be a great major gifts officer, you must be curious about your donors. So, here are some practical questions that will help unlock your donor’s passions and interests. Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts Donors Major-gift officer Major-gifts Questions

8 Ways to Find Major Donors for Your Small Nonprofit

Get Fully Funded

If your fundraising plan doesn’t include a strategy for finding, cultivating, and asking major donors for a large donation, you’re missing out on some big gifts for your small nonprofit. Larger gifts equal more net revenue which means you can do more good.

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Ask Donors To Consider a Recurring Donor Advised Fund Gift

NonProfit PRO

Donor advised funds are all the craze lately. Now is the time to motivate those donors who want to optimize their tax deductions this year to consider a gift from their donor advised fund.

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What Should Organizations Do With a Large Unsolicited — and Unrestricted — One-Time Gift?

NonProfit PRO

While Scott’s efforts — and those of like-minded donors — are a welcome development, recipient organizations are left wondering what to do with these transformational gifts. Endowments Major Gifts Strategic Planning Funding Gifts Major-gifts unrestricted funding

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Donors Choose Anonymity with Record $550M Public University Gift

NonProfit PRO

Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan, inspired the largest gift ever made to public higher education: $550 million. It’s a gift with very few restrictions, made outright over the span of 10 years to the university, its medical school and athletics. Education Major Gifts

How to Insert Emotion Into Major Gifts

NonProfit PRO

Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts Donor communications Emotional connection Major-gifts

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Do Your Donor a Favor and Ask for a Gift

NonProfit PRO

But she cannot, no matter how hard she tries, reach out and access them because she actually thinks that it will offend the donor. Donor Relationship ManagementA CEO listed 60 to 100 people she knew who either had given some financial support already or could give if asked.

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More Recurring Gifts From Digital Approaches

NonProfit PRO

Monthly Giving Recurring Donations Donor retention Monthly giving Recurring Donors Recurring GiftsFace-to-face/door-to-door fundraising, also known as canvassing, came to a screeching halt during COVID-19.

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Major Gift Relationship Doesn’t Count

NonProfit PRO

A meeting started out negatively with the finance person saying that a personal relationship with a donor doesn’t really count – it doesn’t positively affect the retention or contribution of that donor. Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts

How to Use a News Story to Support Your Major Gift Ask

NonProfit PRO

Below is a perfect example from our colleague Diana Frazier on how she advised a major gift officer to use a news story to support a major gift ask. Major Gifts Major Donors Major Gift Ask Major-gift officer

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3 Economic Elements of a Major Gift Caseload

NonProfit PRO

A major gift caseload is not just a bunch of donors who meet a certain giving or capacity criteria. From this pool, you should qualify the donors who want to connect. Major Gifts

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How to Make a Gift Chart to Reach Your Annual Giving Goals

NonProfit PRO

One of the most critical tools in an annual giving director’s toolkit is a gift chart. This chart should be based on accurate target ask amounts for each potential donor in your database. Follow this four-step process to create your own gift chart.

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The Consequence of Not Reporting Back to Your Donors

NonProfit PRO

Read these stories in which major gifts officers either successfully reported back or didn’t. Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts giving loop ReportOne tiny report makes a tremendous amount of difference because it closes the giving loop.

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[ASK AN EXPERT] When Should We Give Donors Gifts?


Today’s question comes from a nonprofit employee who wants advice on when it’s a good idea to give gifts to donors. . Dear Charity Clairity, I know public broadcasting offers donors gifts in exchange for their donations at various levels. Give a personal gift.

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Promises Made and Broken With Donors

NonProfit PRO

Donor Relationship Management Major GiftsThere’s a funny thing about promises or commitments. They are so easy to make and, many times, so difficult to deliver. .

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Express Gratitude to Your Donors Daily

NonProfit PRO

Are you really focused enough on the donor and what they need? Donor Relationship Management Major GiftsStop for a moment, and have a heart and behavior check. Do you express gratitude at the level and frequency you need to?

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Do You Know Your Donor’s ‘Why’?

NonProfit PRO

Why does your donor love your organization so much? Have you sat down with your donor and really listened to the answer? Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts

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Avoid the Triple Whammy: How a Mid-Level Program Can Save Major Gifts

NonProfit PRO

Donors get stuck at a mid-level point of giving because even though they are giving at higher levels, nonprofits are still cultivating them like a $20 donor. So, the major gift program suffers because you’re not feeding major gifts a healthy diet of qualified major donors.

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Do You Need Goals for Mid-Level Donors?

NonProfit PRO

While more and more organizations are realizing the value of a mid-level program, the concept of having mid-level donors, and creating specific strategies and a program for them is still in its infancy. Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts

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A Matching Gift Brings in Big Bucks

Get Fully Funded

A matching gift is a great opportunity to leverage a generous donation from one donor, or a group of donors, to bring in even more money from other donors for your nonprofit. Like the loyal donor they are, they offer to help. Think of it as a matching gift fund.

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Why Your Donor Will Give Again

NonProfit PRO

“I don’t understand why the donor stopped giving,” the major gift officer (MGO) said. Donor Relationship Management Major GiftsThey seemed so interested in what I had proposed last year. They gave and they have been silent ever since.”

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Strong Relationships Build Major Donor Fundraising Success

NonProfit PRO

Donor Relationship Management Major GiftsAs a profession, fundraisers constantly spend a great deal of money on training, education and consultants to learn various techniques to improve performance and results. One can never sit on their laurels.

10 Ways to Tell Donors They Made a Difference

NonProfit PRO

There is not a limit to how many times you should tell a donor they are making a difference. Donor Relationship Management Major GiftsYou could do it every week. But then the question is how do you make the story different and unique?

Lifetime Value Starts With the Second Gift

NonProfit PRO

Donor Relationship Management RetentionThe motivation that gets someone to take the first step to support an organization (donating or volunteering) is quite different from their motivation to continue to be engaged.

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Do You Know Your Donor?

NonProfit PRO

Donor Relationship Management Major GiftsYou and I have a desire to be connected to others and when that other person shows you that they know you, that connection strengthens.

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Prioritizing Money Builds Fake Donor Relationships

NonProfit PRO

Donor Relationship Management Major GiftsRelationships take time. You know that. Your boss knows it. But we ignore time because that is how we have set up things. There is a budget to manage. A forecast to make. So, we go for the fake relationship.

What’s The Difference Between A Principal Gift And A Mega Gift?


The concept of a “mega gift” was coined by the late Jerold Panas , a fundraising pioneer in our industry. In his iconic book Mega Gifts , he writes about the types of people who give mega gifts and what it takes to have relationships with these donors. Who Gets the Gifts.

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Never Visit, Call, Write or Email a Major Donor

NonProfit PRO

How does your donor like to be communicated with? It’s not about how do you or your organization like to communicate — but how does your donor want to be communicated with, that best suits them? Knowing how your donor wants to engage will unlock a new level of relationship with them.

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The Foolishness of Looking for New Ways to Reach Donors

NonProfit PRO

Donor Relationship Management Major GiftsWhy is it we keep looking for some new way to do something when we know the exact steps it takes to get it done? Because the new thing feels so much better. And it looks so good and is easier.

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Love Your Donor for Life

NonProfit PRO

We have a number of major donors in our database that, because of their age or illness have stopped giving, but over their lifetime have made significant gifts to our organization. Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts Planned Giving

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Stop Wasting Your Time With Uninterested Donors

NonProfit PRO

If you are in this situation with a caseload filled with non-responding, uninterested donors, then you are wasting your precious time. Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts

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How To Confuse Your Major Donor

NonProfit PRO

This tactic will confuse your major donor. Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts

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Doing Everything You Can To Tell Your Donor They Made A Difference

NonProfit PRO

Donors want to know that their giving made a difference. That one question alone captures a huge problem in fundraising – a problem you can address in your major gift program. Donor Relationship Management Major Gifts fundraising Transparency

Should You Have a Donor Account for Monthly Gifts?

NonProfit PRO

If you know that the typical number of people who finish a gift is only 21%, that means 79% do not give, even though they go to your organization’s page to donate. What’s preventing donors from making the gift?

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Leveraging Matching Gifts Programs to Boost Donor Retention


Employer matching gifts offer key advantages to nonprofit organizations that strategize for and receive the source of funding. In regards to the key question of “are corporate matching gifts and donor retention levels related?” What to Know About Donor Retention.