Congratulations, you have a match for your organization!
Whether it’s from one donor or a group of donors, a matching gift is a highly effective way to raise money and engage with your donors— if done correctly.
So, here are 3 mistakes to avoid:
1. Making your appeal all about the match. I know this sounds counter-intuitive. After all, it’s a match, an awesome opportunity. Shouldn’t you be talking about it as much as possible? Not really.
The match shouldn’t be the driving factor in whether a donor decides to give—that’s what your overall mission and scaffolding is for. But a match can be the final push they need to give. Try creating your appeal as you normally would, then add in the matching language.
A donor won’t want to give just because some person gave an extra amount to your organization. But donors will want to take advantage of the opportunity to do more of the good work they already care about.
2. Asking your donor to double their gift, not their impact. It’s a slight, but very important difference in how you ask. Be very clear in what you’re asking the donor to do. You’re not asking them to give twice as much. But it could sound like you’re saying that their gift will be doubled so their credit card is charged twice.
You’re asking them to double the impact they can make on the problem.
Show them that their dollar is going to do twice as much good work as it usually does. Let them see how they can make an even bigger difference through your organization when they give with the match.
3. Not circling back to the major donors who made the match possible. Take a moment to let them know what their match did, how much of an impact they made in the fight against the problem. This should NOT be about your organization at all.
Focus on the donors and results from the match. If you used it in an appeal to acquire donors, how many new donors joined your organization through the match appeal? Did their match help this appeal do twice as well as the same appeal did last year? Show them the impact they made on the problem.
Not only will it validate their decision to provide a match, it will help them feel connected to other donors and to your organization’s mission and goals. Plus, it will help lay the groundwork for possible future matches with them.
Now that you know what mistakes to avoid, here are tips for making it a success.