Major Donors: Finding Big Gifts in Your Database and Online / Edition 1

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A winning approach to developing international fundraising strategies

Philanthropy is in a renewed golden age. People want to help, to make a difference, to ensure that the things they value will flourish. In order to capitalize on potential prospects, many nonprofit professionals focus solely on the research of, or communication with, prospects. Although research is an important investment of time and resources, and direct contact with each prospect is essential, neither guarantees successful solicitation of a gift.

Major Donors: Finding Big Gifts in Your Database and Online shows you the Internet and database-mining strategies and techniques that are now making it possible for charities both large and small to target their efforts on those with identified resources and demonstrated interest. It is more of a why not? book than a how-to guide in which the prevailing message is "Yes!" Wherever you are, whether professional or volunteer, in Asia, Europe, Latin America, or the United States, you can do it. You can raise huge, transformational gifts. Why not?

This powerful new book equips you to do it, by perfecting the complex process that requires a reliable combination of skills and intuition, experience and curiosity, discipline and spontaneity, and research and conversation. It presents the tips and guidance necessary to aid in researching potential donors more effectively and helps all types of charitable organizations analyze and select the best practices for developing multiple Internet strategies alongside their traditional marketing, communications, and fundraising methods.

Every part of the nonprofit sector, whether an arts group, a college or university, a health charity, a hospital, or a social change/advocacy organization, will benefit from this book and its fully integrated approaches to:

  • Prospecting for major gifts
  • Identifying prospects
  • Gaining insight into their funding interests
  • Finding more accurate and updated information on donors and prospects
  • Understanding knowledge management, database mining, and prospect research
  • Nurturing hot prospects
  • Prospecting research policy, privacy, and ethics
  • Becoming acquainted with U.S., Canadian, and international strategies
  • Considering what your Web site says to major donors
  • Moving from prospect identification to making friends for life

Written seamlessly by respected names in the field for nonprofit managers, fundraisers and leadership of fundraising organizations, knowledge managers, prospect researchers, and Web builders/designers, this book is a powerful tool to help nonprofit organizations understand the great treasures they can discover when they use the barely tapped resources of "e-research" as the first step in a highly personal program to attract big gifts.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780471768104
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 4/21/2006
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 264
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Meet the Author

Ted Hart, ACFRE, ePMT, is an Internet and fundraising strategist with close to twenty years of experience in communications, fundraising, and nonprofit management. He is founder and President of the international ePhilanthropy Foundation.

James M. Greenfield, ACFRE, FAHP, retired in February 2001, after completing forty years as a fundraising professional at five hospitals and three universities. He has written and edited eight books on fundraising management.

Pamela M. Gignac, Vice President, JMG Solutions Inc., has developed an extensive background in fundraising and prospect research in the areas of donor development, capital campaigns, and major gifts from individuals, companies, and foundations, as well as annual campaigns, and special events.

Christopher Carnie is the Chairman of The Factary Ltd (U.K.) and Managing Director of Factary Europe, specialists in providing tailor-made fundraising research for the not-for-profit sector.

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Table of Contents



Chapter 1. Prospecting for Major Gifts (Pamela Gignac and Ken Wyman).


Prospect Research: Background and Key Elements.

Prospect Researchers and Fundraisers Together.

Big Gifts and Major Gifts.


Research Techniques and Information Sources.

Where Do We Go from Here?


Chapter 2. Knowledge Management, Data Mining, and Prospect Screening (Jeff Gignac and Chris Carnie).



Knowledge Management.

Introduction to Data Mining and Prospect Screening.

Tracking Prospects.


Chapter 3. Why Bill Gates May Not Be Your Best Prospect (Peter B. Wylie and David M. Lawson).

Three Important Concepts: Ability, Attachment, and Affinity.

How to Generate a List of High-Quality Prospects for Your Campaign.

Chapter 4. Prospect Research Policy, Privacy, and Ethics (Stephen Lee and Susan Mullin)

Policy, Ethics, and Prospect Research.

Ethical and Professional Practice Considerations.

Data Protection Regulation: The European Approach.

Notification and Registration.

Conformity with Data Protection Principles.


Data Protection Regulation: The North American Approach.

Applying Privacy Principles to Prospect Research.

The Role of Professional Associations and Intermediary Bodies.

Chapter 5. U.S. and Canadian Strategies (Pamela Gignac and Kristina Carlson).

A Tale of Perspectives.

Strategies for Research and Approach.

Prospect Research Strategies.


Case Study: Researching a Major Donor From Florida, From Canada.



Chapter 6. International Strategies—Europe and Asia (Chris Carnie and Sarah Boodleman Tenney).



Finding European Prospects.

Getting Over the Barriers.

Europe: A Valued Friend.

As For Asia.

Getting the Basics Right.

Specific Things to Know.

Getting Over Barriers.

Other Places to Look for Information.


Chapter 7. Your Web Site—What Does It Say to Major Donors? (Howard Lake).


The Trend Continues.

The Personal Approach.

Needs and Concerns of Major Donors.

Attracting Donors.

Key Elements of Major Gift Fundraising Online.

Chapter 8. An Internet Strategy for Major Donor Fundraising (Anthony Powell).


Understanding the Fundamentals of Major Giving.

Collecting Information and Learning More about Prospects.

Sharing Information and Building Relationships.


Chapter 9. Using Gathered Information Effectively within Your Staff and Volunteer Teams (Nancy Johnson and Pamela Gignac).


Fundraising and Prospect Research Cycle.

Personal Intelligence Gathering (PIG).

Prospect Screening and Review.

The Importance of Information Relevant to Campaign Goals.

Capturing Information.

Other Ways to Keep Team Members Updated.

Lessons Learned Using Screening Companies in the United States.

Overall Pitfalls of Research.


Chapter 10. Moving from Prospect Identification to Making Friends for Life (Andrew Thomas and Ken Burnett).

Panning for Gold.

Moving from Desk Research to Solicitation.



Making New Friends.


Are You Ready to Ask?

Stewardship: Turning Donors into Friends for Life.

Chapter 11. Results Analysis and Performance Measurements (James M. Greenfield).

Fundraising Is an Investment Strategy.

Evaluating Prospect Research.

Criteria for Results.

Evaluating Research Used in Major Gifts and Campaigns.

Evaluating Donor Stewardship and Recognition.


Additional Resources.

Chapter 12. Challenges for Tomorrow (Chris Carnie).


Major Donors: Major Change.

Prospect Research: The Next Revolution.

APPENDIX A: The CSA Model Code for the Protection of Personal Information.

APPENDIX B: Data Mining and Prospect Screening Checklist.

APPENDIX C: Checklist for a Development Strategy.

APPENDIX D: Sample Contact Forms.

APPENDIX E: ePhilanthropy Code of Ethical Online Philanthropic Practices.

APPENDIX F: Potential Planning Measurements for Results.

APPENDIX G: Sample Job Description Text.

APPENDIX H: Data Grid for Estimating Giving Capacity.

APPENDIX I: Activity Reports.

APPENDIX J: Sample Contact Report.

APPENDIX K: Performance Criteria for Major Gift Staff.

APPENDIX L: Nine-Point Performance Index Analysis of Major Gift Solicitation.

APPENDIX M: Checklist for Major Gift Acknowledgment.

APPENDIX N: Prospect Research Online.

APPENDIX O: Donor Development and Prospect Research Recommended Additional Readings.


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