American Cancer Society
New fundraisers across the donor pipeline increased giving
Problem / Challenge
The American Cancer society had many donors and not enough major gift fundraisers to steward them all. As a result, year-over-year value attrition was significant.
Working with Veritus Group, the Society added Major Gift Officers as well as mid-level officers. They developed plans to discover more about donor passions and communication preferences to ensure the right donors were in the correct part of the donor pipeline.
In less than a year, 21 MGOs and 10 MLOs were trained and following The Veritus Way. Donor value attrition fell and over $9M was raised that would have been lost had the attrition trend continued.
“Veritus helped us get laser focused on our donor outreach, stewardship and cultivation. They provided the support and discipline that we needed to not only build this program but make it sustainable as well.”
Inside a Turnaround
What the Organization Needed
ACS had too many major donors for their gift officers to connect with personally. In addition, their donor pipeline was suffering because mid-level donors weren’t getting any personal attention. Veritus Group recommended:
- Hiring more MGOs to place in key markets.
- MGOs would qualify donors and tier them to focus on high-quality donors that wanted a personal touch.
- Building communication plans to ensure donors were learning about impact
- Create business rules to ensure there was good collaboration between teams and that donors were in the right part of the pipeline.
After adopting Veritus Group’s recommendations, ACS added 31 positions nationally, who were trained in The Veritus Way. They adopted a clear set of guidelines to ensure donors were moved smoothly through the pipeline. The fundraisers worked to develop individual growth plans for all major donors and all mid-level tiers.
Staff heard for the first time donors’ moving personal stories of how cancer had impacted their lives, or their families, and why they give.
Lower Value Attrition
In the first nine months working with expanded and newly-trained staff, ACS lowered its donor value attrition average by 20%.
In just 9 months of the partnership, nearly 500 managed, qualified donors increased their giving by a total of $6.5 million.
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