JGA Blog listing page

High Net Worth Donors and Their Impact on Major Gift Fundraising

November 01, 2016


Major gift donors are crucial for the ongoing sustainability of your nonprofit’s mission. In fact, high net worth donors often provide as much as 94% of the funds for nonprofit campaign initiatives. So, it is important that we understand their giving patterns, preferences, and motivations.

The 2016 U.S. Trust® Study of High Net Worth Philanthropy released this week is the sixth edition of the biennial study, researched by the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy and provides nonprofits with valuable insights on this important donor demographic. The report surveyed 1,435 U.S. households with a net worth of $1 million or more (excluding the value of their primary home) and/or an annual household income of $200,000 or more.

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Approach Donors Holistically: Integrate Planned and Major Gifts

August 23, 2016

Donors don’t compartmentalize their philanthropy in the same way that an organization distributes staff responsibilities on an org chart. As organizations are cultivating their prospects and having conversations with them about potential gifts, the conversation needs to be holistic – integrating annual, planned and major gifts into the discussions when appropriate based on the donors’ needs.

Has your development operation fully integrated major and planned giving?

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Identifying Major Gift Donors: 6 Prospect Research Data Types to Study

July 25, 2016

Looking for strategies to identify major gift donors? We’ve asked Bill Tedesco with DonorSearch to provide some insights and he shares that prospect research is a great place to start.

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Building a Systematic Approach to Major Gifts Fundraising

July 07, 2016

Over the years, JGA has often been asked to help nonprofit organizations move from a transactional fundraising model – focused heavily on direct mail and special events – to a long-term sustainability model. The latter approach is based on building donor relationships that encourage and create meaningful opportunities for philanthropic investment in an organization. A key to success in this relationship-building, major gifts-focused model is a formal prospect management approach.

How do you put in place such a system?  What actions need to be taken to formalize an ongoing program of major gifts fundraising?  The following are four fundamental steps in implementing a systematic approach to major gift development:

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Using Events for Donor Cultivation & Stewardship

February 12, 2016

I’ve spent a good deal of my career thinking about events and how to best use them in successful development programs. I’ve worked for organizations where key special events serve as the base of their philanthropic outreach.

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The “Art” of the Donor Qualification Visit

September 02, 2015

We have all heard it: fundraising is an art. However, those of us who have been in the field for any length of time know that fundraising is the perfect blend of art – and science. In terms of the science, there is a proven process that works in developing relationships with major donor prospects: identification, qualification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship.

The focus of this blog post is the art of donor qualification.

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5 Keys to Using Storytelling in Fundraising

May 06, 2015

Storytelling plays a powerful role in communicating your mission to donors. Through stories, you share your institutional history, values, and priorities -- creating a connection between you, your institution, and your donors.

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Motivations for Giving - A Personal Choice

April 15, 2015

A recent Wall Street Journal article profiled Ethicist Peter Singer’s comments about a $100 million contribution by David Geffen for Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center in New York. He questioned whether that was really the best thing that could have been done with Mr. Geffen’s money.

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What Events CAN’T Do for Your Development Program

April 02, 2015

Special events can play a very important role in your integrated, multi-channel development program. For instance, I typically think of them in terms of how they impact the organization:

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Growth in Individual Giving Highlights Need for Major Gift Checkup

July 24, 2014

At JGA, we believe that research informs practice, and thus we work to put recent research into practice with our clients. Recently, we have been a part of the release of the latest Giving USA report.

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