Stewarding Major Gifts With Your Donor Management Software

Guest post by Doron Barbalat of Causeview

We recently shared tips on the iWave blog about the first steps to take after identifying a potential major gifts prospect. These included tactics for relationship building and strategies for presenting gift options. For the best stewardship results, and to make the best use of the fundraising intelligence you have gathered, your donor management software will be vital.

The best donor management solutions connect all your organization’s key activities in a central, accessible location. This allows you to get a complete view of your supporter relationships and act at the best opportunities. That’s why we’ve built our Causeview solution on the platform, letting you bring together all your development tasks on a powerful, intuitive, cloud-based system.

Of course, successful stewardship isn’t just about having a great donor management solution – it’s about leveraging it and taking the right steps. Here, we look at four important actions to take in your donor CRM to turn major donor prospects into major donations.

Track every interaction

Getting the most out of your donor management software relies on the data that contributes to it. It’s important to record and detail all your interactions with a major gift prospect, and to have a comprehensive donor database that lets you do it simply and clearly.

For example, after a simple call with a donor, you should be able to log that a call occurred and keep detailed notes. The logging will help with automation, such as scheduling a follow-up for a few weeks later or tracking the number of days since your last interaction. The notes will help remind you about what was discussed, the outcomes and follow-up steps, even if a lot of time passes.

Other key interactions that should be easily tracked include volunteer roles, events attended, gift history, pledge proposals and revisions, and other communications like letters or emails. Having this kind of data available at your fingertips will let you effectively segment prospects for future outreach, automate tasks and reminders, and create reliable records that anyone in your organization can use in the stewardship process.

Setup reminders and follow-up tasks

A major gift stewardship process can be long, time-consuming, and involve the efforts of various team members. That’s why it’s crucial to make use of automated reminders and follow-up tasks.

You should do your best to ensure that each interaction with a major gift prospect, whether it’s just a check-in call or sharing a formal proposal, is left with a follow-up task. If you record this directly in your donor management system, you can be sure that it will not get lost in the shuffle. Even if roles change in your organization, reminders will be in place to make sure that the stewardship process continues to move forward.

The tasks created can help your team set to-do lists for themselves that ensure productivity, while the reminders can make sure that no follow-up or deadline is missed.

Place an emphasis on events

Events – from fundraising walks to golf days to galas – are valuable programs for many nonprofits and higher education institutions. Many nonprofits choose to manage these in separate systems, but there are many benefits to being able to do so in your donor management platform.

After all, fundraising events shouldn’t be considered isolated activities. Those who attend are identifying themselves as key supporters, and their attendance creates a great stewardship opportunity. This is especially so when it comes to major gift prospects.

If someone you have identified as a major donor prospect registers for an event, that data becomes crucial for your team. You will want to be sure that special attention is paid to them on event day, and that they are asked about their experience in future calls and outreach. This will ensure they are made to feel like an appreciated, valuable supporter, and not just a typical attendee.

Causeview integrates event management with donor management on the platform. Not only can you create events and sell tickets with discount codes, but the information about attendees automatically syncs to their donor profile. With Causeview’s live event check-in app, your staff and volunteers will know as soon as the VIP attendee has arrived, so that you can be sure special attention is given to them.

Keep top of mind with emails

As major donor stewardship processes can be long and drawn out, there can often be lengthy gaps between planned, personal outreach. Given the busy workloads of your team, you may not be able to devote the time for an unscheduled check-in call, or in other cases, it may just be too intrusive of your prospect’s time. Using email can help to make sure that you stay top of mind for your supporter, even during breaks in action.

There are a variety of ways you can go about doing this. Your CRM may have a built-in tool for one-to-one emails. For example, fundraisers using the platform can create email templates, and send them to supporters individually in just seconds. Alternatively, you can connect to a mass email platform, such as Pardot (which is fully-integrated with Salesforce) to send single emails or an email series to entire groups of supporters. Using your tracked supporter data, you can also segment your emails effectively so that the right message reaches the right type of donor prospect.

Even more, powerful email tools allow you to set up triggers, so that emails are also sent at the right time. For example, you can have one type of email that goes to major gift prospects after they have visited a certain page on your website. Or, you can have an email that is sent only a prospect hasn’t visited your webpage in a month and you are concerned that they are losing interest.

Looking for a donor management solution that can do all this and more?

Causeview is built for the platform, so that nonprofits and higher education institutions can integrate their donor and donation management activities into the world’s leading CRM. You can process gifts, track every relevant donor detail, manage fundraising events, and track major donor pledge proposals and payments.

If you’re interested in seeing how it works, schedule some time with our team here.

For more information about Causeview, check out these articles and resources:


About the author: Causeview’s Doron Barbalat. Causeview’s donor and donation management apps for Salesforce help nonprofits and higher education institutions track supporters, seamlessly process gifts, manage events and automate administrative tasks on the world’s leading CRM. If you’re interested in seeing how it works, schedule some time with our team here.

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