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Donor Awareness Matching Gifts

Nonprofits: How to Increase Donor Awareness about Matching Gift Programs

Modify your DonorPerfect donation confirmation emails to include matching gifts

Here at Double the Donation, we often write about the benefits of corporate giving programs, but we also touch upon marketing these programs to your donors. Informing individuals about the possibility of literally doubling donations via matching gift opportunities is step one to extra financial support, but step two is ensuring that these marketing efforts are working!

We’ll touch upon some common marketing efforts to get your donors ramped up to submit that matching gift request form to their employer, but also how to tell if your strategy is working.

 

Marketing Matching Gift Programs

Getting your donors aware about matching gift opportunities is the biggest obstacle your organization will have to overcome in order to receive more funds through these programs. There are billions (yes, billions!) of unclaimed dollars from corporate giving programs because donors are just simply not aware that they can ask their employers to match donations to eligible nonprofit organizations.

Here are three easy and effective marketing strategies to raise donor awareness about matching gift programs.

Include Matching Gift Information in Acknowledgement Letters

If your nonprofit organization is not already including information about matching gift opportunities in donor acknowledgement letters, then it’s a super easy way to start your marketing campaign. When an individual donates money to your organization, the hard part is done. Now you just need to get them to submit a matching gift request form to their employer – but how do you get them to do that?

Include a blurb about matching gifts in your acknowledgement letter. You’ve already got a committed audience, and since the acknowledgement letter doubles as a tax receipt, you can almost guarantee that the donor will read the letter to skim over key points. Make sure you emphasize that requesting a matching gift from their employer is easy and effective. Direct them to your Double the Donation webpage to allow them to check in just a couple of quick steps if their employer offers a matching gift program, and the steps they need to follow to do so.

It can be as simple as this: “Did you know that many corporations offer employee giving programs where they match donations to [your organization’s name]? The tax deductible component of your membership is normally eligible to be matched as well. Check with your employer today to see if they provide matching gifts!”

Make sure to mention that many companies now offer the opportunity to submit these forms online, so that makes the request that much easier. Your odds that a donor requests a matching gift from their employer are so much better if they’ve made a gift recently, so make sure your acknowledgement letters are timely!

 

Strategically Place Matching Gift Information on Donation Web Pages 

As with the above method, you want to make sure to include matching gift information in places that your donors (actual and potential) can see and process quickly. If an individual is on your organization’s donation page, then chances are that they didn’t end up there by accident. This is a great place to let them know that once they commit to the donation, then asking for a match from their employer will only take a few extra minutes. Donors are more likely to pull the trigger when they know it won’t be a long and arduous process, especially once they’ve already made a gift.

Put blurbs about matching gift opportunities on your donation pages, including on the “Donate Now” pages, and especially on the “Thank you for donating!” pages. It would be great as a “Next Steps” option.

 

Engage Your Donors on Social Media

Does your organization have a Facebook page? Twitter? YouTube? All of these are great places to let your donors know how grateful you are for their commitment to your organization’s mission, and a great place to let them know that they can literally double their donation by simply requesting a matching gift from employers. First and foremost, say thank you! This is a crucial part to ensure that they keep reading and engaging with your organization.

Post stories about how the money raised for your organization is helping grow your mission. Include asides about how matching gifts can doubly impact the cause! Facebook is a great place for short posts about matching gifts; Twitter is great for quick and succinct blurbs with links; and YouTube is a great place to submit a video thanking your donors for their contributions and extra efforts in matching gifts!

With social media, the marketing possibilities are endless.

 

Measuring the Impact of Marketing Efforts

The best advice we have on measuring your marketing impact is to create a chart. Create a graph of some kind (whatever your boss prefers, whether it’s a bar graph, a pie chart, or a nifty line chart in Excel) with the total amount of matching gifts received last year versus this year. Or last month versus this month. Use any time span that can really show you a difference between your pre- and post-marketing efforts. Can you see a discernible difference in the number of matching gifts being sent in?

Of course you can download our free Microsoft Excel Matching Gift Tracker and Dashboard >

You can also create a survey (there are many free online software tools) that allow you to send a thank you email to a donor who had submitted a matching gift request. Ask them how they learned about matching gifts, and include all of your marketing efforts, as well as an “Other” box with a free response option. This will help you realize which efforts are worth investing more time in (or at least focusing more on in the future), and which may be fruitless.

Your organization will also be able to identify if a majority of matching gifts are coming from one company in particular, or from a wide array of employers. This is notable because if your matching gifts seem to be coming from one employer, then it’d be a good idea to publicly recognize it as a valuable donor and partner to your organization.

There are a variety of ways to market matching gifts to your donors, and several other ways to measure the impact of these marketing efforts. Too much money goes unclaimed by nonprofit organizations due to a lack of awareness on the part of the donors about corporate giving programs. This shouldn’t be the case! Make sure you’re educating your constituents on a consistent and appropriate basis, and you could be well on your way to a high increase in the number of matching gift requests submit.

Nonprofit Leadership Traits

Four Simple Yet Effective Ways to Increase Matching Gift Revenue in 30 Minutes or Less

Simple Ways to Raise Money From Matching Gift Programs

Are you looking to raise more money from employee matching gift programs but don’t have much time?

If you can find 30 minutes, you can make small adjustments to enhance your organization’s matching gift strategy.

Four Easy Yet Effective Ways to Increase Matching Gift Revenue

Promote matching gifts on social media

Do you maintain Facebook and Twitter accounts for your organization? If so, odds are donors and members are scrolling through past messages on a regular basis.

Take a few minutes to create a post about matching gifts. Not only will it appear on your fans’ walls today, but your matching gift post will linger on your organization’s wall forever. Here are a few sample matching gift messages you can use.

And don’t forget, if you use a service to schedule messages in the future, go ahead and create a few matching gift messages to post automatically over the coming months.

Effort: Ten minutes

View examples of how other organizations are promoting matching gifts through social media channels.


Modify your acknowledgement letters and emails to promote matching gifts

Do you send out an acknowledgement letter to donors? If so, this is a great place to promote matching gifts.

While asking donors to “check with your HR department to see if your employer will match your contribution” still places the burden of research on them, it’s better than nothing.

If you subscribe to Double the Donation’s matching gift service, make sure you’re including a link directly to your organization’s custom matching gift website. This makes it easy for your donors to access everything they need to submit their matching gift requests.

Effort: Five minutes

View additional suggestions on ways to modify the acknowledgement letter to promote matching gifts.


Add a sentence about matching gifts to your email signature

Do you ever communicate via email with individual donors or members? If so, utilize your email signature as an easy way to remind donors to submit matching gift requests.

If you subscribe to Double the Donation’s service, link directly to the custom website we maintain for your organization. Otherwise, ask donors to “please check with your company to see if they’ll match your donation.”

Effort: Five minutes

View email signatures you should consider using.


Educate colleagues about matching gift companies in your city

Send out a list of the top companies which match donations to everyone involved with fundraising in your organization. For instance, if you sell memberships, make sure your membership sales reps receive this email. You’ll be surprised to find out that some of your colleagues have never heard of employee matching gift programs.

While you’ll only be able to include a handful of companies representing a small percentage of companies in your area that will match donations, they’re a good way to raise awareness around the potential of matching gifts.

Effort: Ten minutes

View downloadable resources you can use to educate colleagues about matching gifts.


Take your matching gift efforts a step further:

Take a tour of Double the Donation’s matching gift service to see if our service would benefit your organization.

You may also want to check out a list of additional suggested ways to promote matching gifts. While many of them are more slightly time consuming than the above suggestions, they provide greater benefits and help maximize matching gift revenue. These include:

  • Matching gift newsletter articles
  • Banner ads promoting matching gifts on thank you confirmation screens
  • Incorporate matching gifts on the “Ways to Give” page
  • Include a matching gift link on your website’s navigation bar

Readers: How does your nonprofit promote matching gifts to donors and members?