What to Know About Doubling Donations with Matching Gifts

Double The Donation2023-01-16

Looking to raise more for your cause through matching gift programs? This guide shares what you need to know for you⁠—and your donors⁠—to get started!

In today’s fundraising sector, corporate philanthropy (specifically employer giving programs) is becoming more and more essential for nonprofit success. In fact, lacking strategies for maximizing these opportunities is comparable to leaving behind potential funding for your cause.

Ask yourself this:

Does your organization have a dedicated plan in place to maximize your matching gift fundraising? If not, you could be missing out on a ton of potential revenue that’s made available through your donors’ employers⁠—yet often goes unclaimed.

doubling donations with matching gifts double the donation givecloud

We’ve put this guide together to provide you and your team with an overview of corporate gift matching, the importance of these programs, and how to elevate your efforts. This way, you can have the knowledge you need to drive more matching gifts to completion, thus making the most of the funding opportunities made available to you.

Here’s what we’ll cover:

  • What are corporate matching gifts?
  • Benefits of matching gifts for each party
  • How to raise more through matching gifts

Ready to dive in and uncover what your organization, your team, and your donors need to know in order to make the most of the funding opportunities at hand?

Let’s get started with the basics.

What are corporate matching gifts?

Matching gifts are a particular form of corporate philanthropy that falls under the more targeted workplace giving umbrella. Specifically, a matching gift is made when an individual works for a company that offers corporate matching, completes a personal donation on their own, and requests a match on behalf of the organization they initially supported.

Here’s how the process typically works:

  1. A donor contributes to their favorite nonprofit cause (e.g., yours!).
  2. The donor is informed about their eligibility for a matching gift through their employing company.
  3. The donor completes a brief matching gift request process with their employer, providing details about their donation and the organization to which they gave.
  4. The employer reviews the individual’s match request and approves the match funding.
  5. The matching donation is paid out to the organization. In the end, the nonprofit in question receives two donations for the cost of soliciting one.

Benefits of matching gifts for each party

Matching gifts are what we like to call a win-win situation⁠—or, perhaps more accurately, a win-win-win-win. That’s because each party involved in the programs receives significant benefits from doing so!

Here’s how each stakeholder is impacted:

Nonprofits

Nonprofits looking to build a culture of success are likely looking for ways to do more with limited resources⁠—and matching gifts can help! These two-for-one donations enable nonprofits to make the most of individual support, leverage corporate funding, and better drive forward their missions.

Donors

Donors love having the opportunity to make their dollars stretch further for a cause they care about, and getting their donations doubled by their employers does just that! Nonprofit supporters who participate in matching programs benefit from knowing they’re able to make a more significant impact on their nonprofit missions without reaching back into their own wallets.

Companies

Companies that match donations receive several benefits for doing so⁠—including unique marketing initiatives, increased employee engagement, opportunities to attract new talent, and improved workplace environments. In fact, Harvard Business School reports that approximately 77% of consumers choose to purchase from companies committed to making the world a better place through philanthropy and other means, while 90% of employees who work at companies with a strong sense of purpose say they’re more inspired, motivated, and loyal.

Communities

The individuals that benefit from a nonprofit’s services in the first place are also key beneficiaries of matching gift programs’ impact. When nonprofits receive increased funding through corporate matching initiatives, they are able to increase their own offerings to further serve their communities⁠. And by extension, the communities themselves receive the advantages of optimal programming.

How to raise more through matching gifts

Now that you understand the advantages of corporate matching, let’s see what actionable steps your team can take to drive participation in the programs. We recommend incorporating the following tried-and-true best practices:

1. Inform your donors about matching gift opportunities.

One of the largest roadblocks to matching gift success revolves around a significant awareness gap when it comes to the programs. In fact, research by Double the Donation shows that despite more than 26 million individuals working for companies that match gifts, an astounding 78% of this group has never been made aware of the opportunity at hand. And without knowing that their employers’ matching programs exist, these individuals are not submitting the match requests that they qualify for.

That’s why one of the best things any organization can do to increase match funding is to increase awareness of match programs, to begin with. Specifically, we recommend taking a proactive approach to marketing matching gifts to your donors, supporters, and overall nonprofit audience. This can include your organization’s website, email communications, digital newsletters, text messaging, social media posts, and more. The bottom line is that the more you share about matching gifts, the more likely eligible donors will take part.

Here’s an example: “Did you know that tens of thousands of companies offer matching gift programs⁠—from Fortune 500 brands to the local shop down the road? Find out if your employer participates.”

2. Provide company-specific program guidelines and next steps.

Going a few steps beyond promoting general information about matching gift programs (which is certainly great!), another key step you can take to drive more matches to completion is to provide specific eligibility criteria and next steps. 

For example, after an individual completes your online donation page, you can provide them with access to an easy-to-use company search tool. From there, they can enter their employer’s name and receive detailed information about that company’s giving program. This might include donation minimum and maximum amounts, match ratios, submission deadlines, and more⁠—not to mention a direct link to their employers’ match request form.

Here’s an example: “Thank you for your recent donation of $500 to our organization. Your employer, Apple, will match your gift to help it go even further. Click here to go straight to your matching gift submission portal!”

3. Communicate the increased impact of matching gift participation.

Donors often give because they’re passionate about the organizations⁠ and the missions⁠ they support. When you communicate abstract opportunities, such as matching gift programs, in terms of elevating tangible mission benefits, your supporters will be eager to get involved!

Here’s an example: “Jenny, did you know that requesting a matching donation from your employer on behalf of our organization allows us to provide life-saving care to twice as many sick and wounded animals? Last year, we were able to care for 500 additional furry friends thanks to corporate match funding.”

As you head into the new year with your organization and consider fine-tuning your overall strategy and fundraising plan, be sure to keep matching gift opportunities in mind! Equipped with the right technology⁠—such as the seamless integration between Givecloud and Double the Donation—it’s quick and easy to get started. Happy fundraising!


Read More


We're a remote-first company headquartered in Ottawa, Canada.

Copyright © 2022 Givecloud Inc. All rights reserved.