While working with a highly experienced fundraising analytics firm, I am beginning to wonder if the premise that a donor’s potential to give actually predicts major gift contributions. It appears this is not always the case.
Many fundraising organizations and suppliers have invested a lot of resources such as software programs based on this commonly held belief. Yet donor analyses findings coming out of large, well known nonprofits reveal that giving potential does not equal giving behavior.
Nonprofits have large donor databases and not all of these donors are worthy of the resource allocation required to attract major gifts. So donor driven behavior must approach this issue with an open mind. Accurate selection processes must reflect what works rather than what appears to make sense on the surface.
Perhaps some of you can confirm this for us one way or the other. We would appreciate your comments.