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What to do when constructions bids are higher than your goal

On occasion, momentum can slow in a campaign prior to reaching the goal, the construction bids are more than the fundraising goal, or the campaign volunteers have done great things but the goal has not been reached for other reasons.

Let's take a look at one of these scenarios. A community is raising money for a new $5M aquatic center. The construction bid was estimated at $5M, but the lowest bid was $1M higher than the fundraising goal. Here are a few suggestions:

Go back to the major donors

By now they are your most important stakeholders and have a vested interest in the campaign and the final construction. Ask if they would consider increasing their gift commitment.

Typically, there are anywhere between 12 to 16 major donors who are solicited for the major gifts in a campaign. Those 12 to 16 donors will comprise 60 to 70 percent of your capital campaign goal, regardless of goal amount. Many times the larger contributors have strong emotional ties and interest in the success of the campaign. They may be very interested in helping you reach the new goal!

Look at the pledge schedule and ask supporters to consider one or two more years of their previous gifts.

Capital campaign pledges usually span over multiple years. If supporters are able to extend the years of their gift, this is a common way to reach the new goal. You will need to complete a report from your fundraising data to determine how much could be fundraised by this method or a combination of this method as you go back to your top donors first.

Create a multi-channel communications strategy to remind community members - we still need you! Remind those who were going to give their support is more important than ever.

When the majority of the funds have been raised during the silent phase of the campaign, some community members might think the campaign does not need their contribution. It is important to remind the community that you still need their support.

See your best prospects first. Ben Franklin said, “I advise you to apply first to those you know will give; next to those you are uncertain will give anything. Lastly, do not neglect those who you are sure will give nothing, for you may be mistaken.”

Crescendo Fundraising Professionals LLC utilizes a number of proven techniques to successfully reach campaign goals. Please contact us today for a free consultation.

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