Donations are a huge part of your church or nonprofit’s financial stability, and they’re even better when they’re worth twice as much.
Matching gift programs are corporate programs that allow donors to increase the value of their donation to your organization with their employers’ help.
Through these programs, donors can contribute a gift to your organization and submit a matching request to their employer. As long as the recipient organization is eligible, the employer will match the donation under established parameters.
Full-time employees are typically eligible for a 1:1 matching ratio ($100 becomes $200, and so on). Occasionally, part-time employees and retirees are eligible as well. Minimum and maximum donation requirements/limits often differ from company to company.
Many organizations struggle with reaping the full benefits of matching gift programs because they lack the information needed to successfully promote the programs to donors.
But, you can break the cycle! We’ve got three tips that you can follow at your church to maximize your receipt of matching gifts.
1. Include matching gifts on your online donation forms
The quickest way to begin maximizing nonprofit income with corporate matching gift programs at your organization is to include information about such programs on your online donation forms. Your church can post these forms on your website’s homepage or bulletin, and nonprofits can include them in newsletters.
If your nonprofit or church management software has a donation management feature built in (as many do), you may be able to easily integrate various tools right onto your donation form! For example: Double the Donation offers a searchable widget so donors can determine their matching gift eligibility on the spot.
By adding a matching gift tool to your donation form, your donors can search for their employer and determine their eligibility, donation requirements, and other information without navigating away from the page.
A matching gift tool integrated with a donation form
One easy way for a church to do this is to link to your matching gift page in your weekly email bulletin.
Keep in mind: the easier you make the process, the more likely donors are to participate.
2. Save donors’ matching gift information in your CRM
Your church or nonprofit wants to make use of the donor data you receive from your donation forms. The best way to do this? Save it in your CRM solution, so it’s readily accessible when you need it.
Your church management software essentially functions as a CRM; instead of managing relationships with customers, you’re managing relationships with your congregants. When one of your congregants enters information about their employer’s matching gift program, the information can be saved in their member profile for later use.
With this information stored in your donor database, you can easily target the right donors with matching gift-related content via direct mail, emails, or social media posts. You’ll be able to improve your outreach and marketing strategies with a quick search of your database.
Your CRM metrics can help you understand how many of your donors are eligible for matching, and how many of those have submitted related paperwork. Plus—for nonprofits—you can show your board the positive impact matching gifts have on your fundraising strategy and overall revenue using these analytics.
You might be thinking that you don’t have the budget for an expensive CRM, but there are a lot of free CRMs available for smaller organizations and free church management software out there for smaller churches.
3. Promote matching gifts
After you’ve tacked your matching gift tools onto your donation page and saved matching gift information in your CRM, it’s time to promote matching gifts on your nonprofit website or church website, along with your social media accounts.
Create a matching gifts page on your church website and place a link to this page in your top navigation bar, allowing easy access no matter where donors end up on your site.
The ASPCA’s matching gifts page is a great example.
The matching gifts page on the ASPCA’s website
Your website is the best place to provide in-depth information and resources for your donors. Explain how donors can determine their eligibility, submit required paperwork, and identify any associated deadlines.
Social platforms like Instagram and Pinterest are photo-centered, giving you an avenue to post eye-catching calls for donations and reminders about matching gifts.
Need more fundraising tips?
By educating your donors about their employer’s matching gift programs, you give them the opportunity to maximize their charitable donations while ensuring that your church or nonprofit isn’t leaving money on the table.
If you’re still looking for more tips, check out Double the Donation’s Guide to Marketing Matching Gifts for extra advice and pointers.
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