The Artful Solicitor: Successful Major Gift Moves Management


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Major gifts fundraising is highly individualized. It focuses on the 10 percent who can give the 90 percent. Unlike direct response and special events, a major gift solicitation is most likely to succeed only when you physically and psychologically get in "front" of your prospects. Involvement is the key.
Moves Management, initially developed by G.T. "Buck" Smith and David Dunlop at Cornell University, is a disciplined process of relationship management that is the best way to assure the maximum return on investment. During the webinar, we will examine the process and explore the methods of moves management from prospect identification and research through involvement, solicitation and stewardship.

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The Artful Solicitor: Successful Major Gift Moves Management

  1. 1. The Artful Solicitor: Successful Major Gift Moves Management David A Mersky October 26, 2011A Service Of: Sponsored by:
  2. 2. INTEGRATED PLANNING Advising nonprofits in: • Strategy • Planning (617) 969-1881 • Organizational Development info@synthesispartnership.comA Service Of: Sponsored by:
  3. 3. Affordable collaborative data management in the cloud.A Service Of: Sponsored by:
  4. 4. Today’s Speaker David A. Mersky Founder and Managing Director, Mersky, Jaffe & AssociatesAssisting with chat questions: Hosting:April Hunt, Nonprofit Webinars Sam Frank, Synthesis PartnershipA Service Of: Sponsored by:
  5. 5. The Artful Solicitor:Successful Major Gifts Moves Management October 26, 2011
  7. 7. Setting the Scene• You are the director of major gifts• You receive the following email from the agency CEO about a donor with increased giving potential who is the President of a local company, Power Tools, Inc.• Your agency raises much of its funds through leadership—major and principal—gifts.©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  8. 8. The Message• Met Howard Jackson of Power Tools, Inc.• Last year Howard gave $10,000 without even being asked.• He has attended an educational program of ours in the past• I do know he is doing well and his wife inherited some wealth.©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  9. 9. The Message• At our last Board meeting I checked around and found the following connections – contacts we can ―get to.‖• William Bell-- Plays golf with Power Tools corporate controller.• Franklin Fields -- As you know, he recently moved from a Wall Street firm to become Vice President for Finance at Power Tools.• Al Green-- Is Vice President of the Kalek Corporation which is one of Power Tools major suppliers. He and Howard have known each other and done business together for years.• Charles Reagan -- Is distantly related to Power Tools Board Chairman and sees him frequently at their club.• Phil Burns -- Is a major shareholder in Power Tools, and, of course, is a donor of ours at the $1,000,000 level. I believe Phil could be giving more.• John ―Jack‖ Kennedy -- As the President of Precision Material Handling sits on several boards with Howard and sees him socially.©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  10. 10. The Questions• What should be our next steps with Howard?• How can we use our contacts with him?• How can we best engage him? – I believe his first gift was perceived as a favor to me and a civic duty, and I think we may need something stronger this time. – He has never been to the center and doesnt know us very well, but an upgraded gift would be a huge boost to our campaign.©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  11. 11. Additional Data• Howard is age 66; his spouse, Alice, is 63.• The Jacksons are peripherally involved.• Net worth of $50.0 million.• Annual income is $2,500,000.• Three children, all grown and successful.• Prior to the recent gift of $10,000, he had given $1,000 annually for the last 10 years, and, through his company, once gave an additional $5,000.©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  14. 14. Preparing Your Response1. Who is on your cultivating and soliciting team?2. What moves should you consider?3. How much to request?4. For what purpose?©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  15. 15. MAJOR GIFTS MOVES MANAGEMENT©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  16. 16. ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  17. 17. What is Moves Management?• Fundraisers manage a series of steps (moves) for each identified prospect which will ―move‖ prospects from – Attention to – Interest to – Desire to – Action• Continually moving to the next gift.©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  18. 18. What is a Move?• Each ―move‖ represents a discrete contact – Email – Phone call – Letter – Fax – Face-to-face conversation – Planned events• Background vs. Foreground Moves• Cultivation where solicitation does not occur• One move per month—twelve per year©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  19. 19. Goal of Each Move• In cultivation, hard to ―quantify‖ goal• Avoid goals that are too general• Be realistic—not a major gift in three moves• Sample goals – Prospect accepts an invitation to a site visit – Gain a better sense of how the prospect feels about agency – Determine if pace of moves and goals is correct• Best possible and minimal acceptable outcomes ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  20. 20. Planning Each Move• Review key points to cover during the move• List benefits that will appeal to prospect• What action are you asking prospect to take, i.e., what should be the next step in the process• List questions you anticipate the prospect will ask as well as your answers ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  21. 21. Who Participates in Moves Management?• The prospect or ―moves‖ manager – a staffer• Primary player – the person to whom the prospect is not able to say no• Natural partners – sources of information with strong relationships• Centers of Influence – additional sources of information ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  22. 22. Role of the Moves Manager• Develop a strategy for each prospect• Track prospect’s relationship to organization• Plan moves• Coordinate primary players, natural partners and centers of influence• Execute the plan• Reconfigure the strategy/refine the plan• Coordinate refined plan and execute new moves ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  23. 23. ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  24. 24. Managing the Moves Process• Identifying Prospects• Gathering Partners to Provide Information• Evaluating Prospects• Tracking ―Moves‖• Maintaining Accountability: The Major Gifts Management Team• Keeping Score©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  25. 25. Identifying Prospects• Review your current database of donors• Screen for frequency, recency, upgrades and ―diamonds in the rough‖• Engage your board collectively and individually—the hunt for sources of information and relationships©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  26. 26. Identifying Prospects: Engaging and Gathering Partners • Distribute a list of suspects • Ask your board members—ideally, individually—if not, then collectively • What is the prospect’s gift capacity rating? • Do you have access to this prospect—will they return your call? • Can you share information about this prospect? • Comments? ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  27. 27. Do you Remember Howard Jackson? • Who could be the primary player, natural partners, and/or centers of influence? .Name and Description PP/NP/CoI .William Bell-- Plays golf with Power Tools corporate controller.Franklin Fields -- As you know, he recently moved from a Wall Street firm to become Vice President forFinance at Power Tools.Al Green-- Is Vice President of the Kalek Corporation which is one of Power Tools major suppliers. Heand Howard have known each other and done business together for yearsCharles Reagan -- Is distantly related to Power Tools Board Chairman and sees him frequently at theirclub.Phil Burns -- Is a major shareholder in Power Tools, and, of course, is a donor of ours at the $1,000,000level. I believe Phil could be giving more.John ―Jack‖ Kennedy -- As the President of Precision Material Handling sits on several boards withHoward and sees him socially. ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  28. 28. Evaluating Prospects©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  29. 29. Evaluating Prospects• Why is this individual a prospect?• In what has this person expressed interest?• For what purposes should funding be sought?• What is the giving capacity?• What is our present relationship?• Who are partners/centers of influence?• What is the ―moves‖ plan for the next year?©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  30. 30. Evaluating Financial Capacity• Net Worth – more is better• Discretionary Income – see above• Number of Children – less is more• Age – 55+ are more willing to make a major gift• Prior Gifts to Others – giving begets giving©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  31. 31. Evaluating Financial Capacity• Prior Gifts to Your Organization – giving begets giving particularly if well-stewarded (c.f., August Webinar on Stewardship as a Revenue Enhancer)• Service on Board or Committee – involvement or repayer (e.g., alumnus, grateful patient, family of beneficiary) relationship• Close Relationship with Volunteer/Staff – relationships are vital• Spousal Involvement – major gifts almost always involve both spouses©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  32. 32. ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  33. 33. Tracking “Moves”• The single, most critical step in the process• Discipline and Execution• The ―Call Report‖• Prospect’s Name• Date of ―Call/Contact‖• Name of person making the call©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  34. 34. Tracking “Moves”• Type of Call: • Summary—Detailed Notes – Foreground • Next Steps • Letter – Continue on PM List • Phone • Email – Remove from PM List • In-person – Reassign to other PM – Background• Purpose – Cultivation – Solicitation – Other©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  35. 35. Maintaining Accountability • A monthly meeting—face-to-face of the entire major gifts management team with reports by each staff moves manager • Prospect Name • Capacity rating • Status—where are they on the continuum » Identified » Information gathering » Interested » Involved » Invested » Post-gift stewardship©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  36. 36. Maintaining Accountability • Date of last contact • Nature of contact • Next step • Comments from Moves Manager/Team©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  37. 37. Keeping ScoreA monthly report that shows• Date of report• Number of prospects in the system• Number of moves planned• Number of contacts made• Dollar value of prospects ―moved‖ this month• Dollar value of prior moves received this month©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  38. 38. Getting Started 1. Select 10 to 25 of your best practices 2. Create a file for each 3. Collect easy-to-access research a. Objective sources, e.g., b. Natural partners c. Active listening to the prospect on calls 4. Identify natural partners 5. Consult (confidentially) with natural partners©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  39. 39. Getting Started6. Preliminarily, select a primary player for each prospect7. Preliminarily, develop strategy and gift objectives for each prospect8. Plan five to ten moves for each prospect9. Implement moves and after each move a. Review and record b. Refine strategy c. Fine tune next move©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  40. 40. Getting Started 10. Review status of each prospect monthly with the major gifts management team 11. Add and delete prospects as warranted©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  41. 41. ©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  42. 42. In conclusion Moves management is about time management • Four types of prospects – Those ready to make a major gift – Those needing some cultivation but who would consider a major gift in the near future – Those needing extensive cultivation – Those with capability, but little or no reason to give • Focus on those closest to the major gift decision—the 10% who can give 90%©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  43. 43. Mersky, Jaffe & Associates Financial and Human Resource Development Solutions for Nonprofits 800.361.8689 413.556.1074 fax OFFICES IN BOSTON AND NEW YORK©2011 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  44. 44. Find listings for our current season of webinars and register at: NonprofitWebinars.comA Service Of: Sponsored by: