Marketing Your Matching Gifts Program
78% of donors whose employers will match their donations have no idea their gifts could count for double. That means your organization could be missing out on hundreds (or thousands!) of dollars in matched gifts. What steps can you take to let your donors know about potential matches?
There are a few ways you can tell your donors about potential matches and encourage them to submit them to their employers. Here are some simple ways to spread the word!
Include a note in your appeal
One of the most powerful places to place information you want donors to see is in the post-script of a letter or email. Next time you send an appeal, try including a short post-script encouraging donors to give and to submit that gift for a match. You’ll want to include a little instruction on how to do so! Keep it brief, pointed, and descriptive so donors get the message without detracting from your appeal.
Here’s what it could look like:
P.S. As our community adapts to the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more families rely on donors like you to keep our food bank’s shelves stocked. A gift of just $15.75 will feed a family of four for a week! Visit ourwebsite.com/donate to feed a family today!
P.P.S. Do you want to make an even bigger difference? Use the plugin on our donation page to see if your employer will match your gift! A few seconds and a couple of clicks could make your gift go twice as far.
A simple one- or two-sentence note in your appeal could encourage donors to double their gift—and their impact. Give it a shot during your next campaign and see what happens!
Highlight your matching gifts program on social media
The idea of plugging your matching gifts program on your social media channels might initially sound like a bad idea. Donors generally look at a nonprofit’s social channels for updates about their work, impact reports, stories from clients, and information about upcoming events and campaigns. Is there really a good way to promote your matching gifts program?
Yes! You just have to make it appealing to your donors. Instead of talking about how important matching gifts are to your organization, focus on showing donors how much good they can do in the world by submitting their gifts for a match. Donors give because they want to make a difference; if you can show them that they can double their impact in just a few seconds, they’ll be more likely to give.
Here’s how (and how not) to plug your matching program in a social post:
Weaker: Every month, our organization provides groceries to hundreds of local families. We rely on support from donors in our community to make that happen! If you’re interested in supporting our organization as we keep our food pantry full, please donate at the link below. You can even use the matching gifts tool on the page to see if you can double your donation!
Stronger: You know how important community is, especially during times like these. When you support our food bank, you’re doing more than just donating—you’re feeding hungry families! Now, you can double your gift in just a few seconds. Use the matching gift tool on our donation page to see if your employer will match your gift. Just a few clicks can provide twice the food to your community!
A few simple changes to the copy can make a big difference! Instead of posting about your organization and your new tool, try talking about your donors and how they can make a bigger difference in the world without spending extra money. They’ll be more inspired to give!
Add some (subtle) details to your donation form
Online shopping, bill payment, and other transactions are more common by the day. While that means people are increasingly comfortable donating online, it also means donors are on autopilot when they’re making a gift. Some may even use tools that auto-fill common forms like personal information and payment methods. That means they’re more likely not to look at each area of your form, including your matching gifts tool.
Try catching your donors’ attention by drawing their eyes to your matching gifts plugin. You could do this a few ways:
- Add a few words about matching gifts to the top of your donation form
- Update the matching gifts title and description with friendly, eye-catching copy
- Add a line or two of copy above the plugin and consider making the text a contrasting (but complementary!) color
You could also try adding your matching gifts plugin to your confirmation page! That will give donors the option to submit their gift to their employer even if they missed it during the donation process.
Some online donation platforms, like Qgiv, have integrations with matching gift services like Double the Donation so you can simply toggle on the service and provide a way for donors to find and initiate matching gifts with their employers right on your donation form.
Caption: Merit School of Music uses the Qgiv and Double the Donation integration on their main online donation form.
Anything you can do to draw more attention to your matching gifts campaign and encourage donors to use your matching tools is a bonus! The more your donors are aware of matching options, the more likely they are to use them. That means more revenue for you and more satisfaction for your donors! Try including matching information in your appeals, highlighting your matching gifts tools on your social media posts, and use subtle design elements to draw attention to your matching plugin or integration on your donation form. And be patient! It takes time for donors to change their donation behaviors and patterns—give them matching tools, gently encourage their use, and keep an eye on your bottom line. Your donors are passionate about the work you do—they’ll start using those tools soon!
This blog post was contributed by Abby Jarvis from Qgiv. Abby Jarvis is the Nonprofit Education Manager at Qgiv, a company dedicated to building powerful online fundraising tools that empower nonprofits to thrive and grow. In her 7 years at Qgiv, Abby has become passionate about studying industry best practices, learning how they can help nonprofits be more effective, and sharing that information with fundraisers. When she’s not teaching fundraising workshops at Qgiv’s Fundraising Labs or at conferences, she chairs the fundraising committee on a nonprofit board in her hometown of Lakeland, Florida.