Our prospect profiles just got some new additions this past week. We’ve got a lot going on, so let’s dive in!
The first thing CharityCAN users will notice is that Prospect Profiles have a new front page summarizing things like donations, recent board positions, connections and household data. We’re bringing out recent or important information and putting it all on one page. From the snapshot you can jump out to view more detailed profile information, so you can dive into the nitty-gritty.
We think this will be a great first starting point when researching a new potential major gift donor.
AI-Generated Summaries (Beta)
The other thing that appears on our snapshots is our new AI-Generated summaries. We’re using Open AI‘s GPT language model to summarize raw profile data into easily digestible text summaries. This is one of the new features we’re most excited about, as we think there are a lot of possibilities for these summaries. This feature will enable a researcher or a fundraiser to get a quick paragraph to add to an email, profile, or donor database. We’ll dive a little more into how we’re putting these together in a future blog post.
This feature is in beta and will probably be updated in the coming weeks and months, so we’d love to hear how you’re interested in using it!
Relationship Donation Filters
Every Prospect Profile has a full list of relationships. These are connections to other individuals through charity and company boards or other known organizations. We’ve taken that list of relationships and overlayed our donation data, so that not only can you see your prospect’s connections, but also which of those connections are donors to other organizations.
What’s more, you can now filter this relationship list to find donors by cause, amount or location. You can bring up a profile of a volunteer and quickly see if they have any new prospects in their network.
AI-Generated Summaries (Beta)
The other thing that appears on our snapshots is our new AI-Generated summaries. We’re using Open AI‘s GPT language model to summarize raw profile data into easily digestible text summaries. This is a beta feature, so we’d love to hear your feedback!
Relationship Donation Filters
In the Prospect Profiles Relationships section, scroll down to the Full Relationship List to try filtering relationships by donation data. You’ll see prospect connections filtered by donation cause, amount and locatoin so you can easily mine relationships to find new potential donors.
Giving Tuesday is one of the most important days of the year for Canadian charities. Every Giving Tuesday, thousands of charities across Canada receive millions of dollars from donors.
In 2021, CanadaHelps estimates that Canadians donated $43.6 million on Giving Tuesday. As Giving Tuesday continues to grow in popularity, it’s a safe assumption that this number will continue to grow, as well.
It is clear that Giving Tuesday has a positive impact on Canadian Charities. One, it is extremely effective in encouraging people to give (some of whom will be brand new donors) and two, it raises the profile of philanthropy in Canada generally, creating an increased awareness of Canadian charities, the work they do, and the funding required to do that work. But is there a way Canadian charities can benefit from Giving Tuesday beyond the gifts made and the recognition received?
Consider a charity that receives $100,000 in donations from 2000 new donors on Giving Tuesday. Fantastic, right? $100,000 in incoming donations from people who have never given to the organization is an amazing accomplishment and should be celebrated. But is that organization maximizing the benefit these donors could provide?
To truly maximize the benefit of Giving Tuesday, charities should look beyond the initial gift, and funnel new donors into their pipelines. The best way to do this is through screening and segmentation.
Here’s an example:
Consider the charity that received $100,000 in donations from 2,000 new donors on Giving Tuesday. If that organization screens and segments those donors, the impact of Giving Tuesday will be far beyond $100,000.
Let’s say, if after screening, the breakdown of the group’s 5 year total giving capacity is as follows:
Suppose, if after segmenting: The top 5% (100 people) are funneled into the Major Gifts pipeline. After careful cultivation and stewardship 10% (10 people) of them make a major gift with an average size of $10,000 (which is just a fraction of this group’s total 5 year giving capacity). The result is $100,000 in additional revenue stemming from Giving Tuesday, just from the Major Gifts segment of the screened Giving Tuesday donors.
Giving Tuesday is an important day for Canadian charities. It generates fundraising revenue, increases recognitiion, and creates awareness. Screening and segmenting the new donors a charity acquires on Giving Tuesday and funneling those donors into appropriate pipelines will ensure the impact of Giving Tuesday lasts far beyond a single calendar day.
Donation records can tell you a person’s affinity for a cause. Salary records and real estate values are useful in gauging a person’s capacity to give. But to really get to know your prospect you need to look at biographical data. Biographical data tells us about a person’s experiences and interests. It helps answer questions such us:
What are this person’s academic interests and qualifications?
How has this person’s careeer progressed?
What are his or her recreational interests?
CharityCAN has a wealth of biographical data ranging from press releases to academic qualifications. Biographical data sources in CharityCAN include:
Thomson Reuters corporate biographies and academic qualifications
ZoomInfo press releases and web refrences
Canadian Who’s Who biographies
Here is a short video walkthrough showing you how to access CharityCAN’s biographical datasets:
Relationship mapping has become an integral part of philanthropic prospect research. Relationship mapping can show you how to connect with a prospect, the connections of a board member or major donor, and the different ways your organization is connected to another organization.
Most of the time when we map relationships we are looking to realize, or visualize, a certain connection. Perhaps you want to see how your board connects to the board of Barrick Gold or maybe you want a list of corporate boards a new board members sit on. In both cases we know the beginning and the end of the relationship chain we are trying to map.
This type of relationship mapping is incredibly useful and this utility is the main reason relationship mapping is such a big component of CharityCAN. That said, you are leaving potentially important information on the table if you are only concerned with getting from point A to point B.
Consider the Relationship Path search below:
In this search, we are looking for connections Headwaters Health Care Foundation has to Enbridge Inc. There are 14 total connections and the strongest one is Ron Hay to Al Monaco. This is a big win: Headwaters has a connection to the CEO of Enbridge (Al Monaco) through a past board member (Ron Hay). If we were prospect researchers looking into the viability of Enbridge (or Al Monaco) as a major gift prospect our relationship mapping exercise has been an unqualified success. That said, there is something we may be overlooking here: Blake Goldring, the intermediary in the Headwaters-Enbridge connection.
Let’s take a closer look:
When we expand Blake Goldring’s organization list we can see he is quite active on both philanthropic and corporate boards. He’s connected to organizations including WWF Canada, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Sunnybrook, AGF and Acuity. On first glance, Blake Goldring appears to be an interesting prospect – as a major gift prospect himself or as a link to the companies he’s associated with. Let’s dig a little deeper to see if our fledgling assumptions about our intermediary connection hold true.
When we look at the donation records CharityCAN has on file for Blake Goldring, we see over 300 gifts to a wide variety of causes, including a number of six and seven figure gifts. When we look at the donation records CharityCAN has on file for AGF (Blake Goldring is the CEO and Chairman of the Board), we see over 400 gifts to a wide variety of causes, including a number of six and seven figure gifts with a decided tilt towards healthcare and hospital giving.
While the original intent of this relationship mapping exercise was to explore connections between Headwaters and Enbridge, we would be remiss to not acknowledge the value surfaced when we explored Blake Goldring, the intermediary connection in our original search. Blake Goldring is a legitimate major gift prospect. The companies he is associated with are legitimate donation/sponsorship prospects. Paying attention to the intermediary connection in our search has been a good use of time.
As more fundraising organizations engage in relationship mapping, the ones that pay attention to the entire map, not just the point A to point B journey, will be the ones that come out ahead.
One of our CharityCAN subscribers is a researcher at a major Ontario arts organization, and earlier this spring she was given a task by her team’s gift officers: find ways to personally connect with current patrons that did not yet have an established relationship with the organization.
As she put it, “As is true for many not-for-profit organizations, our fundraising efforts can only be successful when we develop strong and respectful relationships with our donors.” Armed with a list of almost 175 prospects prepared by her gift officers, she set out to find people associated with her organization who could be liaisons to these prospective donors and encourage the building of relationships with them.
Her first task was to identify the members of the organization’s board and senate, plus a few other advocates – minus any inactive or deceased board members – and then create prospect profiles for those advocates and the list of prospects within CharityCAN.
“It took a couple of days to create the prospect profiles” she said, “but it was worth the work [to ensure] that all possible connections for each of our organization and patron contacts were explored.” She also noted that “creating the prospect profiles also helped to clarify which contacts actually had viable connections to explore.”
"It's a huge help knowing which board/senate members are connected to these prospects"
Once the profiles were created, she used CharityCAN’s relationship path search to find connections between patrons and organization contacts. In total, she was able to find 150 direct connections to 64 patrons and over 7,000 indirect connections to 102 patrons, and then create the final reports for her team using the data exported directly from CharityCAN. In the end, that’s direct connections to over one third of the prospects put forward by the gift officers. If you remove the 50 American prospects that aren’t in our relationship mapping data, the success rate goes up to 50%!
While she noted that “this is not a project that’s designed to provide ‘instant’ results … the information I provided has been received with optimism.” She also shared that one of her gift officers mentioned that “it’s a huge help knowing which board/senate members are connected to these prospects.” Since they will be tracking the success rate of the project over time, it will be interesting to watch how these new relationships develop.
Now that she has the relationship and profile information she needs in CharityCAN, she also said she’s started including connections found using the relationship path search function in a dedicated section of the profile reports she prepares for new prospects.
It’s great to learn firsthand how an organization is using relationship mapping to help their fundraising efforts. If you’d like to take a look at some of our relationship mapping tools, contact us for a free trial!