Strike a Match
“At the beginning, this was a novel way of us talking to our donors,” MacLean says. “People came to it and said it was great, and they expect it year after year. Then people see a matching gift — [this year’s match is from financial-security company Great-West Life, up to $50,000] — as an added incentive. They come back to it year after year.
“We have a really fantastic donor base, very loyal annual givers,” she adds. “We get a great response rate from a smaller donor base. Our donor base knows they’re giving back to an organization that matches their values and does good work.”
Somani credits the KHP staff just as much as the messaging for the success of the campaign.
“The idea of buying a kid some time has really resonated with the entire organization [and] received support from the entire organization internally. Everyone works toward that goal for these children. All the people are committed to the campaign,” she says.
“Really more than anything the concept is so strong and resonates with so many people. We receive great feedback and great results,” Somani adds. “The level of internal support from KHP has driven our ability to go out and refresh the campaign each year as well.”
Coast Guard Foundation: An Emergency and a Match
Emergency appeals are old hat for disaster-relief organizations such as the American Red Cross and The Salvation Army. They are part of their annual direct-response fundraising plans, with a formula of how to incorporate emergency
appeals with other solicitations.
But how do emergency appeals both get executed and affect nonprofit organizations that do not regularly deal with them? That’s the scenario the Coast Guard Foundation (CGF) found itself in last year.
In late February 2012, a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter crashed during a training mission, claiming the lives of four Coast Guard members. The tragedy was a shock to the Coast Guard family, and the Coast Guard Foundation, which is missioned to provide education, support and relief programs to benefit Coast Guard members and their families, knew it had to help. But it also had to think through how an emergency campaign would affect its donors and its annual Memorial Day appeal.