Why philanthropists are prequalified prospects

As a financial advisor or agent, you may do research to discover who in your area has assets and money in motion to fill your prospecting pipeline. You might seek referrals or find out who just moved into the neighborhood. It’s a lot of work. There’s a quicker way, however, to find the type of clients you may want. Philanthropists have money to give away. So how do you connect with them?

Consider museums in your area with a development department. They figured out who has money in the community, brought them on board as museum members and cultivated them as donors. They even transformed them into larger donors. It seems someone has done a lot of research already on who in the community may be high-net-worth.

Let us look at four ways you can identify philanthropists in your area.

  1. Collect invitations to charity galas. You probably get them already. They list the committee members and major sponsors. Some of these might be family foundations.
  2. Save charity gala programs. These booklets list sponsors and patrons who paid more to get their names in print as recognized donors.
  3. Read the plaques on the walls. Hospitals, museums and cultural institutions run capital campaigns from time to time. The major donors have their names on metal plaques or chiseled in stone. There are often many of them.
  4. Read the annual reports. Nonprofits issue them too. Sometimes they have names like “record of philanthropy” or “report to the community.” It talks about the organization and its mission. It usually lists donors by giving tier. People who do not want their names listed can opt out and be anonymous.

Next steps for contacting prospects

You have names but not much else. What’s the next step in turning them into prospects?

  1. Research online. You may find mailing addresses or perhaps phone numbers.
  2. Consider social media. They might have a LinkedIn profile. You might have a second-level connection. Maybe you share the same hobbies or graduated from the same school. Might they connect?
  3. Who knows who? Show some of these names to friends and clients. They might know them or be connected to the donors’ children.
  4. Join the organization and attend events. This provides the opportunity to meet them socially. Major donors often attend events to see how their money is getting spent.

Your company might have the resources to make this research easier. They might have connections too. Be sure to follow your company’s rules.

Bryce Sanders is president of Perceptive Business Solutions Inc. His book “Captivating the Wealthy Investor” is available on Amazon.

Learn more ways to prospect by getting involved in your community:

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