Imagine there’s a magic wand you could wave and automatically double your nonprofit’s donation revenue. Wouldn’t you use it? Now, what if I told you that magic wand exists. It’s called matching gifts, which you can discover through employer appends.
Employer appends empower your nonprofit to use corporate matching gifts to drastically increase your fundraising revenue. According to NPOInfo, 78% of the 18 million people who work for companies with matching gift programs don’t know their companies offer such initiatives— that’s between $4 and $7 billion of potential matching gift revenue going to waste every year.
Don’t be one of the nonprofits that let this invaluable fundraising resource fall by the wayside. Continue reading to learn how you can leverage this powerful tool through the following points:
- What are employer appends?
- Why should you append your data?
- How do employer appends help fundraising?
- How to Append Employer Data
Ready to get started? Let’s dive in.
What are employer appends?
Data appending is the process of adding new information to your nonprofit’s database. You could use data appending to correct outdated, void, or inaccurate data, or to supplement existing data with more information from external sources.
An employer append is a specific type of data append that finds where your donors work and what their job titles are. From there, it will tell you which donors work for employers that have strong corporate fundraising potential.
Employer appends use data your nonprofit already has on its donors— such as names, email addresses, phone numbers, mailing addresses, and more—to uncover donors’ employer information.
Don’t worry if your nonprofit doesn’t have all of those details in its donor database. The more information you have on your donors, the better— but you don’t have to have every entry for every donor to complete a worthwhile employer append.
Why is the information provided by data appends, and specifically employer appends, so valuable? Let’s look at why you should append your data.
Why should you append your data?
The process of appending data can be complicated, but it’s absolutely worth it. Data appends have many general benefits. Here are four that offer the most value to your mission-driven organization:
Data appends add more details to your existing database. With more information, your nonprofit will have more valuable fundraising tools at its disposal. The more you know about your donors, the better!
Look at some of the possible data points you can gather:
- Email address
- Phone number
- Physical address
- Educational background
- Giving history
- Hobbies and interests
To learn more about the specific information your nonprofit can and should collect, check out this comprehensive guide from NPOInfo.
On top of adding more information to your nonprofit’s database, data appending also verifies the information you already have— a process known as data hygiene. Making corrections to any inaccurate entries will make your data significantly more valuable.
Imagine having the wrong email address for a donor. When you send them the email campaign you have worked so hard on, they’ll never see it! Avoid this undesirable scenario and many others with the help of data appends.
After the data appending process adds information and corrects existing information, you can separate your donors into categories based on common characteristics. For instance, you could target donors who are 18-24 years old with a digital campaign designed for young adults, and target donors who are 60+ with a direct mail campaign better suited for seniors.
Age isn’t the only segmentable factor, however— you could also use gender, location, income, and more. Any type of separation will allow your nonprofit to connect with its audiences in a more individualized way.
Check out this campaign guide for creative inspiration on how to reach these segmented groups.
According to IBM, bad data costs companies in the U.S. $3 trillion annually. That’s a significant expense for any business, but especially for nonprofits who want as much money going towards their missions as possible.
Data appends will save your nonprofit money in the long run by checking your data for accuracy, and adding new, useful information to your database. You won’t waste any resources in the form of time or money on reaching out to incorrect contacts.
As previously mentioned, there are many sweeping benefits to data appends. Now, we’ll look at how employer appends can help your organization’s fundraising efforts in particular.
How do employer appends help fundraising?
Collecting data on your donors’ employment probably isn’t your first thought when looking for a great fundraising strategy. However, employer appends are actually one of the best ways to boost your donation revenue. Here are three main ways this works:
Corporate matching gifts are a form of corporate philanthropy in which a company matches the charitable donations of its employees. For instance, let’s say John makes a $50 donation to Charity A. His employer, Company B, who offers a matching gift program, then also donates $50 to Charity A to match John.
Simply put, matching gifts double a large portion of your donation revenue. It’s worth mentioning again that between $4 and $7 billion of this potential nonprofit revenue goes to waste every single year, according to NPOInfo.
How can you avoid being one of the nonprofits that squanders this money? Employer appends are the best way to capitalize on matching gifts, as they tell you where your donors work. With that knowledge, you’ll know who works at businesses that offer corporate matching gifts. From there, you can reach out to those people directly and share information about how to start the matching gift process.
According to Double the Donation, only 9% of employees make use of matching gifts because most people don’t know they exist. Tell your donors about the opportunity they have at their fingertips to give more money to a good cause at no extra cost to them.
Raise double the money for your nonprofit and improve your donors’ experience through corporate matching gift programs.
You might be wondering what happens if not many of your donors have access to matching gifts. Would employer appends be worth it for your nonprofit? The answer is yes, because employer appends have fundraising benefits beyond just matching gifts. One such benefit is the potential for corporate sponsorships.
A corporate sponsorship is support a nonprofit receives from a company for a project, event, or other endeavor related to its cause. There are three main types of corporate sponsorships:
- Financial: This is when a business donates money to support a nonprofit. It’s also the most common type of sponsorship.
- In-Kind: In-kind sponsorships are when a company donates goods or services to a nonprofit. For example, a lawyer could offer their legal expertise pro bono as an in-kind service, or a baker could donate treats free of charge as an in-kind gift.
- Media: A media sponsorship consists of a company paying for advertisements— whether radio, TV, or print— for a nonprofit. These help spread the word about your mission-driven organization while saving you the expense that comes with paid advertising.
Performing an employer append on your donor database could reveal you have many donors who work at the same place. This would be a great starting point for corporate sponsorship! Or, maybe your nonprofit has a donor connection who works for a business that frequently supports nonprofits— start there, too!
An employer append also reveals which of your donors work at businesses that offer strong fundraising programs. Having corporate support behind your fundraising efforts will amplify your nonprofit’s reach, and subsequently, its money raised.
Corporate fundraisers come in many shapes and sizes. One potential type is similar to a matching gift, in that an employer will match the money their employees fundraise for a nonprofit. Another form would be a business itself hosting a fundraiser for your mission-driven organization. All options offer you value!
Similar to sponsorship potential, if your employer data append shows you have numerous donors who work for the same employer, that would be a great lead for a corporate fundraiser.
If you want to get a head start on which companies have strong nonprofit support programs before your employer data append, check out this guide from Double the Donation. For now, let’s dive into how employer appends work.
How to Append Employer Data
As we said, employer data appends are the process of adding information about your donors’ employer details and job titles to your existing database. However, that definition doesn’t quite capture how this is done. So, let’s discuss how to append employer data.
There are six main steps to the data appending process:
- Formatting: This step involves making sure all your nonprofit’s data is in the same format, so it’s easier to sort through.
- Uploading: After formatting, your nonprofit will upload a file containing donor information to your employer append partner.
- Matching: This is when your data is compared against another external database, matching each donor record in your file to one in the external database.
- Enhancing: Enhancing refers to actually fixing your database according to what was found in the matching stage. At this step, information from the external database will be added to your records and used to fix any errors or inaccuracies.
- Verification and validation: Here, make sure everything in your database is accurate and valid. For example, do any emails trigger a failed delivery response? If so, take them out.
- Downloading: Downloading is the part when you can download the updated files and add them to your nonprofit’s database. It’s ready to use for your next fundraising campaign.
Data appends can be a lengthy, technical process. If that intimidates you, relax! There are data append services out there to do the hard work of data appending for you.
Data Append Services
A data append service is a service that handles the process of filling in the missing and inaccurate gaps of your donor database for you.
The benefits to data append services are extensive. First, they’re professionals, meaning they perform data appends in much less time than if you tried to append your nonprofit’s data by yourself. Next, they’ll likely have access to exclusive databases you wouldn’t otherwise be able to use— that means your nonprofit will receive more detailed and accurate information.
You have many options of data append services to choose from. Here are just a few general data append services that are out there:
As a nonprofit, though, aim to use a nonprofit-specific data append service. These services will be familiar with the goals and challenges unique to mission-driven organizations and therefore will be better equipped to help you update your donor database.
NPOInfo is an example of a nonprofit-specific data append service. It offers employer appends specifically, among other services like email appends, phone number appends, date of birth appends, and address appends.
Now that you know how to append employer data and where to look if you need help with the process, you’re ready to use employer appends to support your nonprofit’s fundraising campaigns.
In the increasingly competitive world of nonprofit fundraising, it’s important to use every possible resource to raise the most money for your cause. Employer appends will give your nonprofit an advantage, allowing you to wield overlooked tools like corporate matching gifts to double your donation revenue.
Remember that knowing where your donors work opens up many fundraising doors, and that there are services out there to help your nonprofit if you need it.
Before you go, check out the three articles below for more support in nonprofit marketing:
- Best Virtual Fundraising Tools for Nonprofits: 2020 Edition. The world has become increasingly virtual after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Check out this guide for help on successfully shifting your fundraising efforts to a digital setting.
- The Top Fundraising Statistics You Should Know. This article gives you a comprehensive look into donor behavior, the success of specific types of fundraisers, and more, all focused on all things fundraising.
- The Basics of Creating a Great Fundraising Letter. Many fundraising campaigns benefit from the use of letters. Use this guide for the best tips on how to create a powerful fundraising letter.