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Matching Gift Acknowledgement

Retain Matching Gift Donors: The Cheat-Sheet (+Examples)

Nonprofits have all recognized the need to thank their donors for the kind support. But is your organization taking the time to thank individuals who submit matching gift requests? Matching gifts are often an overlooked area in fundraising in general, and in donor recognition especially.

Nonprofits thank their donors with the knowledge that a little recognition can go a long way when it comes time for donations the next year. The same applies for matching gifts. If you acknowledge a matching gift, you increase the likelihood of that donor submitting a matching gift in the future.

Acknowledge Your Matching Gift Donors

There are several strategies used to thank donors for their donations all designed around showing your donors that you appreciate their matching gifts.

Check out the following list of ways to acknowledge a matching gift request.

Acknowledgment Letters and Postcards

Many nonprofits use Thank You or Acknowledgment letters to recognize their donors when they make a donation. If the donor submitted the matching gift form at the same time as their donation simply modify the letter you were originally going to send to include a message about their matching gift.

If the matching gift form is submitted by the donor after the donation acknowledgment goes out you’ll want to additionally acknowledge the receipt of the matching gift form. Not only do donors want to know that the form is being processed but it’s an additional opportunity to create a experience without asking for another monetary donation.

Similar to acknowledgement letters, postcards are an effective way to say thanks to donors for submitting a matching gift and can be very cost effective. Here’s a sample matching gift postcard sent out after the matching gift check has actually been received by the organization (often many months after the match was initially submitted).

Sample Matching Gift Postcard sent by the University of Michigan (Front Side)

Matching Gift Postcard

 

Sample Matching Gift Postcard sent by the University of Michigan (Back Side)

Matching Gift Postcard Thank You

Email Recognition

If changing your pre-formatted donor letters is a hassle or you don’t have the funds to send a separate matching gift acknowledment, why not automate the whole process with a dedicated email for matching gift donors? It doesn’t have to be long or complicated. Just a few sentences thanking them for submitting a matching gift.

Sample Matching Gift Thank You Email Sent Out By NC State
Matching Gift Thank You Email

Be sure to highlight how important matching gifts are for the organization!

 

Newsletter Recognition Lists

If your organization sends out a regular newsletter consider creating a section where you list the overall financial impact of matching gifts which you’ve received in the last year.

Summary of Matching Gifts Received and the Impact on the Organization

If you want to take it a step further highlight the companies which provided matching gifts as well as the donors who took the time to initiate the matching gifts. This will publicly acknowledge your donors, while simultaneously increasing awareness of matching gifts among your other donors.

Recognizing Donors on Social Media

Does your organization have Twitter or Facebook accounts? Utilize your social media accounts to promote matching gifts by recognizing individuals by name who submit matching gift requests. Not only does this immediately acknowledge your matching gift donors, but it also alerts all your other followers about employee grant programs.

Save time, raise awareness, and increase donations – all with a single tweet or status update.

Nonprofit Leadership Traits

Three Keys for Private Schools to Raise More Money From Employee Matching Gift Programs

Are you a K-12 private school looking to raise more money from employee matching gift programs? If so, this article is for you!

A significant percentage of the companies that offer to match employee donations will double donations to K-12 private schools. But just because companies offer these programs, doesn’t mean your school’s parents and donors are following through with their match requests.

There are three keys to increasing the amount of money you’re raising from employee grant programs.

#1 – Know Which Companies Match Gifts to Private Schools

At the most basic level, we see some independent schools suggesting that parents “reach out to their HR departments.” But that’s just the beginning. If your private school wants to increase matching gift revenue, make sure you’re aware of the many companies that match employee donations.

In fact, hundreds of companies in nearly every major city match employee donations. While we can’t list out our entire database, here are a few examples to help your independent school’s staff get a better feel for the standard match programs offered by companies,

Heinz

Heinz-matching-donationsThe H. J. Heinz company will match donations made to a variety of nonprofits including private schools, up to $5,000 a year per employee or up to $1,000 a year from retirees.

And don’t forget about your volunteers! Through the Heinz Cares program, the company offers a $250 grant for an employee volunteers for 50 hours or a $500 grant after 100 volunteer hours.

Read more about the Heinz matching gift program.

Pepsi Cola

pepsi-matching-gift-program-nonprofitsPepsiCo offers a matching gift program where the company matches donations to nearly all nonprofit organizations including independent K-12 schools. Each year Pepsi matches eligible contributions of up to $10,000 per employee, sometimes at a rate as high as 2:1 (effectively tripling donations.)

And don’t forget about grandparents! Pepsi’s employee match program is open to current employees as well as retirees or their surviving spouses and domestic partners.

Read more about the Pepsi matching gift program.

#2 – Raise Awareness

Unfortunately donors must be the ones to actually initiate the matching gift process. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t play a role in prompting donors to think about and submit matching gifts.

We encourage you to take a few minutes to review your fundraising efforts (ex. check your website, email templates, paper letters, etc.) to see where you’re promoting matching gifts. You’ll surely find a number of places where you should be including matching gifts. For instance:

If you have a few minutes look through our matching gift marketing resources for ideas and examples of how other organizations are effectively promoting match programs to parents and donors.

#3 – Make It Easy:

Let’s face it, parents and donors are busy. While they clearly care about your school, between carpool, coaching their kids’ sports teams, PTA duties, and of course their own jobs, time is their most precious asset. So ensure you’re making it as easy as possible for your donors to submit matching gifts.

Providing parents with company specific matching gift information so they don’t need to go to their HR departments can go a long way. This could include information such as:

  • Forms
  • Guidelines
  • Employee eligibility
  • Instructions
  • And anything else your donors need

Consider reaching out to major employers in your area to obtain the appropriate forms or subscribing to a matching gift service (such as Double the Donation).