Tips to Identify your Funders' Centers of Influence

Imagine walking into a room filled with individuals who shared similar characteristics with some of your most loyal donors and contributors. These individuals understand your mission and vision, and they have a propensity to give. This room exists, and it’s filled with your donors’ centers of influence (COI). If you tap into this group, you have the potential to unlock an influx of new donor dollars.

Identify your donor profile

In order to identify your funders’ centers of influence, you must revisit your donor profile. 

Who is this individual? Where do they “hang out” both online and offline? Once you identify these groups, you can identify additional individuals who may contribute to your cause. Since these individuals associate with one of your donors, they should be more inclined to donate to your cause as well, right?

Let’s take an example and identify Donor Dana’s COI. Dana is a woman, nurse, wife, mom, and active church goer. By defining each of Dana's roles, you can tap into an extended group of potential donors. First, don’t overlook Dana’s husband as a potential supporter. With a combined gift, she can increase impact. Once you develop a relationship with Dana’s husband, you can explore his COI.

As a nurse and a woman, Dana may be involved in various associations designed for both nurses and women who are nurses. You may consider hosting an event for these groups or participate in their next meet-ups to share more about your organization. Since Dana is a mom, another network to tap into would be her children’s school and associated organizations. Finally, her affiliation with a church provides you with yet another group of individuals with an inclination to give. By connecting with a group of like-minded individuals, your organization has a greater opportunity to expand your influence.

Track your Donors' Interests & Favorite Causes

Online targeting tips

Beyond in-person events, your organization can target these associations through digital advertising. Utilize keywords associated with Dana’s COI within your search and social media ad campaigns. You can also segment your email campaigns based upon characteristics or personas associated with Dana’s COI. Tailor the content or messaging to specifically address the needs of these groups, so they feel as if you’re speaking directly to them.

Remember, like-minded individuals associate with like-minded individuals. As you cultivate your donor database, don’t forget to consider your donors’ COI. This group may become your next set of donors and ambassadors for your cause.

To assist you in developing your donor profiles, review how StratusLIVE tracks donor interests and favorite causes. 

Posted by Kelly Perry

Kelly Perry is a Senior Digital Marketing Manager, Nonprofit Solutions at StratusLIVE. She has over ten years marketing and communications experience within nonprofit technology and the publishing industries.