Do you have projects to accomplish, but are not quite ready to launch a capital campaign? Capital campaigns can be both overwhelming and sometimes unnecessary. Thinking outside of the box can give you a boost and bring some real fun and excitement back to your team and your donors. “Advocace is helping us move forward with a major gift program, along with keeping our annual fund growing,” says Bill Sammons General Manager at WKNZ-88.7 The Bridge.
Where do you start? Make a project list, or better yet, a “wish list.” Don’t be shy—put everything on it, items that are $10 or $10 million dollars. Think little and big. What things would be beneficial to your project? Maybe you need maintenance items, new transmitters, or capital improvement. This list becomes your tool to begin exploring funding interest. So, don’t leave anything off the list, no matter how unrealistic you it seems to you. Still need help? Try asking yourself and your team what projects or items are in your strategic plan. Consider things like endowments, equipment, supplies, program needs and personnel needs.
Now you are on your way.
Your list has been drawn up and you have just finished prep for your “Major Gift Program!” Once you get the list into the hands of donors and other interested people in your organization you will find your Major Gift Program in full swing. Your team will be energized as tangible and immediate needs are met. You will also see that the process of brainstorming to form your list will help you and your team refocus and reinvest.
There is really no down side to this type of project. So, my suggestion is that you start today. Get your team involved and then celebrate every time a line is filled. Once you begin to explore these types of programs, you will find that major gifts are generated and the excitement helps you stay “year-long” strong. It also helps fill in the gaps between capital campaigns. Bill goes on to say, “…At The Bridge we are learning to apply these new principles. We are seeing our annual fund grow as we build our major gift program.”
Once you get started send along your success stories and your ideas. Others will benefit from hearing what you have accomplished and ideas can grow from the work that you have done. And by the way, HAVE FUN!