Prioritize Your Way to Fundraising Success!


If you’re like most development directors or executive directors, you feel a little overwhelmed by your day-to-day responsibilities.

And the day-to-day demands of your job put you at risk of not taking the time to cultivate your major donor relationships the way you’d like.

To help you prioritize your major donor development and fundraising, I strongly suggest creating a donor rating system. Developing a system is relatively easy, and it will take the guesswork out of which donor you should contact and cultivate first.

Here’s how it works.

Using a scale of 1-3 (with 1 being the lowest rating, and 3 being the highest rating), rank each of your majors on these four qualities:

  1. Total giving for the past 12 months – the top third should be rated “3”, the middle third rated “2”, etc.
  2. Affinity for your work or cause – do they love what you do or those you serve?
  3. Relationship strength – is the relationship between the donor and you or someone else at your organization strong or weak?
  4. Financial capacity – regardless of how much they’ve given, how much could they give?

Now, add up the total score for each donor. The best score would be 12, and the worst would be 4.

Then sort your list by the highest-rated donor, down to the lowest-rated donor.

Now you know which donors you should cultivate first! And you know how to spend your time to create a bigger impact for your organization.

Want to know more? Get Jim’s recorded webinar and start learning how you can raise more money and steward important major donor relationships during this most important time of the fundraising year.

To help you with your major donor fundraising this year-end, we’re running a series of Jim Shapiro’s most helpful posts this month.

We hope it provides you with some tips and tactics that skyrocket your major donor revenue during this important fundraising season.