How to Find the Next Big Donors for Your Nonprofit

To quote the famous philosopher Gollum, “we wants it, we needs it, must have the precious [donation]”. Okay, maybe that’s not fully accurate but the point still stands. As a nonprofit, one of your many tasks is to gather donations from people and organizations who see value in your cause. These donations are the lifeblood of your organization, and are necessary to continue operations. You might receive donations here and there, some may be big, most are small, and occasionally you get a donor who sticks around for a bit, but you want more. That’s completely understandable, and there’s nothing wrong with wanting (needing) more money, but you don’t know where to start looking. Well, maybe I could shine some light on that.

The title of this blog is only part truth, because sometimes the big donor has to find you, but we’ll cover that in a bit. For now, let’s start with step one, setting goals.

Map it Out

Like I said before, you receive donations all the time, some big and some small. However, these “big” and “small” are relative to the size of the nonprofit. For example, a $500 donation to would mean something different to “Feeding America” than to your local soup kitchen. So, for you, map out what is a big and small donation to your organization. Once this is settled, you can actually create an ICP (ideal customer profile), an “ideal donor”, and start the hunt for them.

Make it Personal

I know as a nonprofit, your adspend is most likely on the lower side of the budget. That’s okay, because when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade, right? Use what you have whether it’s videos, banner ads, or what, just make sure you’re going after your ICP. It can be a challenging task, so you may want to seek the help of an outside marketing team to help you find your way.

Reach Out

We’re still talking about your ICP here. Through social media, make the connection with similar donors to your “best” ones thus far. “Like” what they’re saying, “retweet” what they care about; build a relationship. Donations come from those who find value within your cause, so give them that value that they need. A side effect from this outreach could be others seeing your page and visiting your website (which you want).

In fact, M+R benchmarks for 2017 claim that per visitor, nonprofits make $1.19. It may not sound like much, but if you have an enticing website (something I may be able to help you out with) and a large social following (again, something I could help you out with), coupled with the fact that nonprofits are seeing a raise in website visitors by about 4%, those dollars count.

Be Informative

Okay, so now that a relationship is going, start to inform your new donor where money goes in the organization. Maybe it’s to feeding hungry children, or researching a deadly disease. Whatever the cause, make sure you have a deep outline of where their money is going, because they’ll feel more comfortable buying into something that’s explicitly laid out in front of them; I know I would. Okay, maybe I’m not the best example, but a study by claims that people are much more likely to donate if they know exactly where their money is heading off to.

Donate and Advocate

Once and if they chose to donate, keep in touch. Perhaps a personalized letter to their home, or an email message to their inbox. It doesn’t have to be about the cause, just a thank you for donating to the organization would be great; anything to show appreciation. Did I mention personalization? Personalization is huge when it comes to making people, especially people giving large sums of money, feel special.

This small token of thanks (perhaps coupled with a sweet coaster or bumper sticker) will get people talking, and spread the word amongst other potential donors. And you know, people tend to hang around similar minded (and wealthy) people.

 My advice? Speak to a marketing agency to get the ball rolling with these tasks. They know how to engage with people, obtain qualified leads, utilize social media to the maximum, etc. Better yet, reach out to me at Netrocon Digital, because this is what we do. I’ll be in touch.