Donor Matching Gifts: 3 Ways To Leverage Data To Drive More Matching Gifts


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In nonprofits, every tidbit of information can be useful for your engagement with your donors, but more importantly for their engagement with you. The more engaged your donors are with you, the more matching gift submissions you will receive.

Why Matching Gifts Are Important

Matching gift submissions can increase the amount of money your organization receives without recruiting more donors. With corporate matching gifts programs, one donor can potentially double their donation by filling out and submitting a simple form to their eligible employer. Your organization receives the initial donor’s gift plus the matching gift ratio of their company. So, how can you leverage donor data to increase your donations and encourage matching gifts?

There are three critical things you need to know about donor data in order to successfully guide your donors toward matching gifts.

3 Ways to Encourage Donors to Match Gifts

1) What you need to know about donors

You have their name, age, gender, address— what else do you need to know about your donors to encourage them to match gifts? Their height? Their weight? Their favorite food?

In regards to matching gifts, you need to know your donors’ specific matching program guidelines. In order to find out those details, you need to know where your donors work.

To find this information, try to implement prospect research and gift matching software. The more you know about their employer matching programs, the more customized and successful your matching gift outreach can be.

Employer Gift Matching Programs

There are many matching gift programs, but they are not all the same. In fact, these programs can vary in just about every aspect.

Matching gift programs can differ in:

  • Match Ratio: Some companies match donations at a 1:1 ratio, while others can match as high as 3:1. Knowing which of your donors work for companies with high ratios can help you determine valuable outreach strategies.
  • Minimums and maximums matched: Most matching gift programs outline a minimum and maximum donation amount that they will match. These can vary greatly, so make sure to check out how this impacts your matching gift messaging to donors.
  • Submission deadline: Most matching gift programs enforce submission deadlines, so your donor will need to submit their request within the correct time frame. Some employers choose a window after the donation is made, while others choose a specific time of year to end the deadline. Having this data can make a huge difference in how many matching gifts your organization could receive.

A donor’s employer can really affect their matching gift guidelines. Storing this donor data makes it simple to segment outreach and effectively communicate with donors about matching gifts in a timely and relevant manner.

2) How you can leverage your relationship with a donor

The more authentic your relationship is with your donor, the more you can leverage that relationship and encourage them to match their gifts on your behalf.

Fostering honest, natural relationships by implementing donor data into your continued communication with your supporters will ensure a rise in both your nonprofit donor retention and matched gifts.

The best way to actually improve your donor retention and outreach is to:

  • Be transparent about donations
    • Host meetings with donors in your community
    • Post publicly accessible information about your nonprofit
  • Connect with your donors and leverage your relationship
    • Improve tailored communication with donors
    • Use social media, emails, blogs, and your website to engage with donors and show your gratitude
  • Focus on donor stewardship: a key to prolonged donor engagements
    • Afford your donors with the opportunity to optimize their impact by encouraging donors to match gifts through company matching programs
  • Screen your nonprofit CRM
    • Segmentation is vital to pinpoint the needs and desires of different donor groups
    • Utilize a matching gifts automation tool like 360MatchPro to identify constituents employed by matching gift-eligible companies
    • Leverage your donor data to its fullest extent by tailoring your communication to matching gift-eligible employees

These methods connect donors to your mission and ensure that they feel empowered to submit matching gift requests.

3) How you can streamline your donor management

It can be daunting to manage all of this donor data.Thankfully, there is software to streamline your nonprofit’s donor management, improve donor relationships, and encourage donors to match their gifts. We’ve listed some of our favorite ways to streamline donor management below.

Customize Your Data Reporting

By customizing your data into personalized reports and charts, you can make your donor information both easier to understand and act on.

While this software can organize your donor data, it is imperative to pursue every donation with personalized encouragement for donors to search their corporate matching gifts program eligibility.

Use Your CRM to Improve Donor Engagement and Encourage Matching Gifts

Effective donor data maintenance deepens your relationship with your donors and your community, leading to new fundraising opportunities, future engagements, and more matched gifts for your organization.

With many different nonprofit CRMs in the market, make sure you find one that provides:

  • Actionable insights so that you can simplify donor management.
  • Email automation so that you can follow up with the right donors at the right time.
  • Data reporting so that you can access the data that you need when you need it.
  • Grant, volunteer, and event management so that you can maximize your results.
  • Project tracking so that you can set goals, collect stories and close the project loop.

Editor’s Note: We’ve built Virtuous to help you turn donor data into deeper relationships. See how it works here.

These nonprofit CRM features enhance your relationship with your donors and encourage them to match their gifts. With donor management software, your organization will never miss an opportunity to engage and educate your donors, acknowledge their contribution, or encourage matching gifts again.4

The more data you employ to your benefit, the more you can encourage your donors to match their gifts. Educate your donors on the matching gifts program, make the search for eligibility easy for them, and encourage them to match their gifts to increase their impact. Once you collect and organize your donor data, it will become increasingly easy to develop an effective and lasting matching gift strategy.

Responsive Fundraising: The Blueprint for Engaging Modern Donors

Traditional fundraising strategies no longer work. This blueprint explains why today's donor expects more, and how nonprofits are shifting to responsive fundraising.

Get the Blueprint