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  • Kristin Raack

Don't Leave Money on the Table: Maximizing Gift Matching

Most corporations invest in gift matching programs. Interestingly, experts estimate high levels of unclaimed matching gifts – potential funding left on the table. The amount is assessed at around $6 million on the low end, or more than $4 billion on the high end! Why such a gap? Corporate employees often are unaware of their company’s program, or simply not reminded to participate. Or in some cases, they might be familiar with the concept, but lack an understanding of how to tap in to it. This is where you come in! There are plenty of opportunities to highlight workplace giving opportunities in your communications with donors, board members, volunteers, and program participants. These individuals can amplify their gifts through employee gift matching. The greatest challenge is figuring out how to capitalize on the opportunity!

The easiest way to increase this type of giving is to add details about employer gift-matching in your donor communications. Here are five discrete strategies to highlight employer gift-matching and easily expand the impact of your existing donors:

  1. Include language about matching gifts in appeal materials. Adding this language to an annual solicitation, for example, is an easy way for nonprofits to increase this type of giving. If you use an appeal response device, be sure to include information about corporate matches there as well.

  2. Update online donation forms to include a matching gift checkbox that reads “My employer matches gifts.” The gentle reminder to indicate an employee match enables your organization to more easily link up gifts to soft credit the donor.

  3. Incorporate matching gifts on a “Ways To Give” page. The “Ways To Give” page of a nonprofit’s website reminds donors of the multitude of ways to make a donation. Emphasize the ease with which a donor can multiply the impact of their gift and possibly even receive benefits at the combined gift level (if that’s your organization’s policy). The call to action should be a prompt to ask the donor’s employer how to initiate the process.

  4. Highlight matching gifts in newsletters as a reminder of this unique way to increase (often double or triple!) the donor’s impact. Remember to include language about this opportunity at least once a year in ongoing newsletters, perhaps in syncopation with the timing of appeal letters. A brief donor story or quote about a gift match is especially memorable!

  5. Add a “Call To Action” button to your organization’s email signature. One example is a tagline with a button that reads, “Does your employer offer gift-matching? Match your gift now!”. You never know when it will catch someone’s eye and increase their annual gift on the spot.

How do you remind stakeholders about workplace gift matching? Where are you stuck? Let us know in the comments!


Interested in learning more?

  • Check out the matching gifts infographic compiled by Double the Donation

  • Review the key findings in the 2018 Giving USA special report: "Evolution of Workplace Giving"

Money image by Nattanan Kanchanaprat from Pixabay