10 Ways Major Gift Officers Can Use Personalized Video

Frank Mumford, CFRE
May 3, 2021 · 3 min read
10 Ways Major Gift Officers Can Use Personalized Video

With 90% of revenue coming from 10% of the donors, major gift officers have their work cut out for them. With so much riding on each donor and only a handful to go around - it's crucial to maximize your communication tactics.

As a major giving officer I often faced the question, "beyond notes, emails, or phone calls, what else can I do to move the donor along the relationship continuum to a major gift?" 

Personalized video is my answer.

Here are some video ideas:

1) Introductions

Use video to introduce yourself and to put a face to your name. Relationships are everything in major giving, and personalized video will make a great first impression. You could even use video to introduce another person on your team and/or vice versa.

2) Report on donor impact

Nothing brings your donors more joy than hearing directly from those they support. Use video to bring donors to the scene and connect them to the project, program, or person they help support. Tools like Gratavid make it easy to collect videos and share those directly with your donor.

3) Testimonials

Similar to #2, collect testimonials from those your donors support. You can even share testimonials from your staff, volunteers, and other donors. The more you can lift up other voices, the more the donor can see themself as part of your organization and will support.

Here is a great example from Mercy Multiplied, where a powerful testimonial follows a personalized thank you video.

4) Book meetings

Send a video asking the donor to schedule a virtual or in-person meeting. Include a link to your calendar using a tool like Calendly; Calendly and other booking software make it easy to book and find time.

When I was at United Way, I used this approach to close over a million dollars in giving. My video said, “I thought it might be easier to schedule 15 minutes where I would share your impact and what this year’s donation request would be. Click the link below to find a time.”

5) Pre-visit reminders

We’ve all experienced an awkward first date. “I’ll meet you at Starbucks. I’m wearing a blue blazer.” Instead of forcing your donor to guess what you look like, send a personalized video! A personalized video will make your prospect feel welcomed, relieve pre-visit hesitations, and skip the awkward introduction.

6) Post-visit thank you

Maybe you didn’t send a pre-visit reminder, or you did and want to do both. In Major Gifts, your goal beyond building the relationship is to keep the door open for future visits. The post-visit thank you could be just as important, especially if you follow up with the information they had asked about.

7) Birthday & Anniversary videos

Certain events stand out and definitely deserve a personal video; maybe it's their birthday, a giving anniversary, or the gift they make is in honor of another, and you want to lift that up. We love this example from Highlands College.

8) Staff turnover & transitions

There is nothing worse than losing a great major giving officer and the fear of hurting the relationship with your organization, too. Video is a great way to explain why someone is leaving AND introduce the donor to their new relationship manager. Moving donors from one major gift office to another, or up/down from mid-level, video can help seamlessly transition the relationship. Having the current relationship manager share that they appreciate the donor and that the following video would be their new relationship manager is a great way to inform your donor and not leave them guessing or confused.

9) Major announcements

Use video to share organization milestones, introduce a new CEO/Executive Director, launch a new campaign, or communicate the release of your annual report. Sharing video announcements is an excellent way to engage your donors and bring the human touch you won't find in a normal email blast.

10) Thank you’s

I saved this for last, which is the main thing to do with video; thank people! Thank your donors, personally, 1:1, and beyond just your thank you, including one from board members, clients, students, etc. The video from you should be personal, heartfelt, and concise.

If you want a quick walk-through on how Gratavid can help you share impact, build stronger relationships, and move the relationship towards a major gift ask, schedule a demo. All our demos are tailored to you and your needs.

WRITTEN BY
Frank Mumford, CFRE
VP of Customer Success @ Gratavid
Frank serves as the VP of Customer Success with Gratavid. Previously he was a Senior Donor Advisor at The Greater Twin Cities United Way where he was first introduced to the opportunity Gratavid presented in connecting and engaging with donors through video. He holds a B.A. in entrepreneurship and a B.S. in economics from Northern Michigan University, where he got his start as a student telethon fundraiser. He has more than 13 years of fundraising, sales, and marketing experience across the higher education and social service sectors. Frank is a Board Member of AFP Minnesota Chapter and the NMU Alumni Association.
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Eshon Allen

Gratavid truly helped us reimagine the connections we make between our school community and the donors who make it all possible.

UCLA
Eshon Allen
UCLA
Jenny Johnson

Gratavid has helped take our stewardship to a new level. I can not express enough how much I love this platform.

Ole Miss Foundation
Jenny Johnson
Ole Miss Foundation
Kerri Naber

Our donors are so thankful to receive Gratavids because it communicates that they are a big part of our mission. A personalized video makes them feel valued and seen.

Mercy Multiplied
Kerri Naber
Mercy Multiplied
Zack Huffman

Gratavid is a game changer. Since starting I’ve used it every day.

Teach For America
Zack Huffman
Teach For America
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