Major Donor Fundraising: The Million Dollar Question

Major Donor Fundraising

What if the answer to one simple question could help you secure a million dollar donation?  Would you ask the question?  You bet you would!

Your job as a Major Gifts Officer is to figure out what that question is for each of your donors.

Great major gift officers have learned to invest more time asking their donors questions than talking about themselves or their organization.  You should ask each of your donors about their giving and their goals.  Once you truly understand what’s important to your donors you’ll be able to ask the right questions of them.

One simple question can result in you securing a major gift.  So start asking questions and learn all that you can about your donors and what makes them tick.  Then you’ll be able to ask them to meet the right need at the right price.

So, are you asking your donors to give gifts hoping that they will say yes?  Or are you asking each donor lots of questions to find out what they love – and then asking them for one specific gift that you know they’ll love to be asked for?

Bonus Thought: The knowledge you gain by asking your donors questions about their giving and goals helps you align your organization’s growth goals and strategies with your donors’ values.  Because if you are trying to grow in ways that your donors don’t love, you’re going to have a much harder time growing.

Jim Shapiro
Jim Shapiro

Jim Shapiro is the fundraising coach you always wanted, the proven Sherpa who can help you get to the top of the mountain. He has 20 years experience raising money, including serving as the VP of Development for a $300m nonprofit. He then co-founded The Better Fundraising Co. to help small-to-medium nonprofits raise more money. Jim is married, serves his community by coaching high school football, and has three children.

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