By: Adam Weinger, President of Double the Donation
Corporate philanthropy can come in many different forms — including event sponsorships, in-kind donations, and matching gifts. More and more businesses are beginning to take part in corporate giving for a multitude of reasons, and nonprofit causes continue to reap the benefits.
As one of the most prominent examples, a matching gift campaign is one of our favorite virtual fundraising ideas, as it allows each party involved (i.e., individual donors, fundraising nonprofits, and charitable businesses) to drive further toward their goals. And like any digitally-based fundraiser, matching gifts provide a lot of valuable data for the nonprofits receiving the funds — when they know how to use it.
If you’re looking to hit the ground running with matching gifts, it’s important to keep these types of key metrics in mind:
- Number of match-eligible donations
- Matching gift requests submitted
- Company donation matches received
- Percentage of matches secured
- Total matching gift revenue
- Average matching gift amount
Tracking and leveraging the right matching gift metrics will allow your organization to accurately measure the results of your fundraising initiatives and significantly improve your overall matching gift fundraising.
Ready to dive in? Let’s begin.
1. Number of match-eligible donations
Many businesses offer corporate matching gift programs — but these corporate giving opportunities are extremely popular in the fundraising and corporate social responsibility (CSR) spaces. In fact, 65% of Fortune 500 companies are reported to match gifts, with tens of thousands of smaller businesses following suit. Unfortunately, a vast majority of match-eligible donors are completely unaware of these programs in place.
So, what does that mean for your nonprofit? More than likely, a lot of your donors fall into that category. For example, let’s say your organization receives 1,000 donations from 1,000 donors in a year. Of these transactions, you’ve collected employment information from 500 donors. From there, you can determine that 100 of them work for companies that offer matching gift programs.
That would put your match-eligible donation rate at 10%. If every match-eligible donor submits a donation request with their employer, imagine what your organization could do with an additional 10% in bonus donations!
What you need: The most important piece of information you’ll need to calculate this metric is your donors’ employment data. Once you know this, you can easily research company match programs and identify how many (and which) of your donors are match-eligible. Then, you’ll be all set to target the right donors for matching gifts and aim to encourage more supporters to take the next steps.
2. Matching gift requests submitted
Unfortunately, not every eligible donor will go on to submit a match request to their employer. By taking a look at the number of matching gift requests submitted by donors and comparing it to the total number of donations that were marked as match-eligible in the previous step, you can build a better understanding of the effectiveness of your matching gift strategies.
For instance, imagine 10 of your 100 match-eligible donors actually submit a match. Looking at this figure can help your team better visualize the problem and work to close the gap between eligible matches and secured matches. You might increase your marketing efforts and ensure more match-eligible donors receive detailed guidance.
On the other hand, if 90 of your 100 previously identified eligible donors submit match requests with their employers, you can see that your strategies in place are working well and continue with your existing plan.
What you need: To collect this data, we recommend keeping in contact with your donors throughout the matching gift submission process. If you send out a donation follow-up email with instructions for requesting a match from a particular company, be sure to also include a prominently placed button that allows donors to quickly and easily communicate that they’ve taken the first step.
3. Company donation matches received
Of course, you’ll want to take a look at the total number of matching gifts that your organization receives in any given time period. This is one of the most critical metrics and often one of the easiest to calculate.
Once you’ve determined how many corporate matches you’ve collected, you can compare this figure to the number of match-eligible donations that were processed, as well as the number of donors who indicated that they’d requested a match. Then you can identify potential roadblocks and see what is getting in the way of more secured matches.
What you need: To determine how many company matches your organization has received in a certain period, you’ll simply need to count the number of matching gifts you’ve collected — either through the companies directly or via a third-party CSR platform.
4. Percentage of matches secured
Your organization’s rate of matches secured (in terms of percentages) can be a significant indicator of the potential your matching gift strategies have overall. Plus, it can help you better visualize the data you’ve already collected.
For instance, you might look at the total number of matches you’ve received in a year (say, 500) and think that you’re doing as good as you possibly can. And while 500 matches is certainly a substantial amount, if you have 5,000 match-eligible donations in your system, the number secured is still just a drop in the bucket. On the other hand, if you receive 500 matching gifts compared to 600 match-eligible donations, your level of participation is significantly higher, comparatively.
What you need: Your nonprofit’s percentage of matches secured is essentially calculated as the number of company donation matches received compared to the number of match-eligible donations identified.
5. Total matching gift revenue
Knowing the total amount of matching gift revenue your team collects in a certain time can be extremely beneficial in terms of tracking and reporting the benefits of matching gift programming overall.
If you determine that your nonprofit has received $1 million in matching gift funds in the last year, you can essentially look at those dollars as free donations made possible through your donors’ employer giving programs. If you raise $1.5 million in matching gifts the following year, you can clearly see that your matching gift strategies are leading to real growth.
What you need: To calculate your organization’s total matching gift revenue, all you need to do is determine the total of all matching gifts collected in a predetermined time period. This lump sum will represent all of the matches secured through all of your donors’ employee matches.
6. Average matching gift amount
Your average matching gift size can tell you a lot about your existing strategies, your donor base, and your potential for scaling up your efforts.
According to fundraising research from Double the Donation, most match-eligible donation amounts fall between $34 and $3,728. Suppose you see that your average matching gift is on the higher side of the spectrum. In that case, you might determine that your team is doing a great job marketing matching gifts to your mid-size and major donors but could perhaps be doing more to target lower-level match-eligible donors as well.
If your average falls on the lower side, you might see that the inverse is true — either way, having access to this data allows your team to better understand how to grow matching gifts among a wide range of donors.
What you need: Once you have the total matching gift revenue calculated in the previous step, simply divide that metric by the number of matches received (metric #3) to determine the average match amount collected by your organization during the time period.
Collecting and analyzing fundraising data can help your team plan accordingly while adjusting your strategies to meet your needs. In regards to matching gifts, the above metrics enable organizations to determine effective practices, identify areas for improvement, and craft targeted plans going forward.
If you have yet to begin tracking and analyzing this information, now is the perfect opportunity to do so. For more information about leveraging matching gifts, check out ClickBid and Double the Donation’s free, on-demand webinar.