Skip to content

How to find new donors to support your charity events

It’s the planning season for charity events! If you’ve got one on the horizon, don’t worry. This article will help you find new donors to support your upcoming events.

Charity events are the perfect way to build relationships with new donors and get them invested in your cause. It’s also an opportunity to bring new donors into the fold by asking them to support your event. However, if you’re unsure how to secure that event sponsorship, we’re here to help with that too.

In the meantime, here are four tried and tested ways to find new donors to come along to your charity events.

Data Mining 

Your supporter database is the perfect starting point for in-house prospecting. Before getting started, take some time to understand what it offers and what you can gain from it. 

  • What fields and tables can you search for and report on? 
  • What insight can it bring you? 

Start by searching for anyone with a senior-sounding job title: President, Chief Executive, Owner, Founder, or Chairman. Next, analyse past giving and then sit down with your team to brainstorm other useful parameters you can search for.

Wealth Screening 

Wealth screening involves comparing the information in our Wealth Intelligence Database with the information in your supporter database.

During a wealth screening, we identify potential donors who have the capacity and propensity to support your charity events. This involves analysing publicly available data about individuals, including their estimated wealth, publicly available philanthropy, and other corporate and social connections. This information can help you identify your best prospects, engage with them, and secure major gifts.

Desk research (cold prospecting) 

Cold prospecting is the answer if you need to expand your invite list beyond your current supporters. We offer a New Names service, which identifies people not currently connected to your organisation but (research suggests) have both the capacity to give and an affinity to support your charity events. When we do this research, we provide you with a rationale for each person we identify, this explains why we think they are appropriate for your cause. Our selection is made using agreed criteria that are developed with you. 

Face-to-face interviews and prospecting groups

Face-to-face prospecting has taken a back seat in recent years (it’s also possible to do this over video call), but sometimes, in-person interviews help you get the richest data. Bring some key supporters together. This helps them feel involved in your mission and understand how helpful it could be to connect you with new prospects who could come along to your events and be engaged as potential major donors.

Here are our top tips for carrying out in-person prospecting interviews:

  • Background research on the interviewee – have an idea of their networks.
  • Make sure they know why you are there – be very clear about your objectives.
  • Start by asking who they know.
  • Use a ‘Contacts Needed’ list to prompt.
  • Confirm the next steps.

Here are some tips for structuring your in-person prospecting groups:

  • No more than 8 – 10 participants.
  • Include 2 – 3 members of your team.
  • Include 150 – 200 names on your ‘Contacts Needed’ list.
  • Keep the interview to two hours maximum.
  • Assign a meeting chair to keep things moving.
  • Bring people together around a boardroom or dining room table.
  • Provide refreshments and include breaks – sometimes, the best ideas come during that downtime.

Before starting your research, think about what will best meet your needs. In addition to finding new donors to support your charity, this is an opportunity to build deeper relationships with your existing supporters.

Speak to some external organisations who can help you work out the best research to meet your goals. Once you know what you’re doing and how you’ll do it, update your privacy policy and inform your supporters about your research plans. 

Get started for free

Our wealth screening and data summary report is free when we screen 2,000 or more of your UK supporters. Ready to transform your major gift fundraising? Contact us today.

At Prospecting for Gold, we specialise in research, wealth screening, consultancy and regulatory compliance, making fundraising more effective and successful.

Wealth screening can help you expand your donor base and boost your fundraising. By understanding your supporters, you can personalise your approach, making your fundraising efforts more effective and efficient.

Successful major gift fundraising isn’t just about securing a donation. It’s about building relationships, understanding people’s motivations and aligning their interests with your cause.