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  Do you solicit memorial donors? Frequently Asked Questions

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Any gift can be viewed as an opportunity to receive another but special considerations need to be given to memorial givers.

If a donor is a non-alum memorial giver only they would typically be excluded from mass solicitations or other communications.

However, these donors may be included on recognition lists either as individual donors or indirectly. i.e. Gifts were received this year in memory of ... There may also be other tribute publications that they would be listed on them. Ideally an institution would get their permission to do this since they may not be aware of donor recognition publications for the institutions.

Also would depend on the amount of the gift, and whether they wanted to receive future mailings or information about the university or specific program they may have donated to.

Size of the gift would also determine where they fit into in the stewardship and gift club arena, i.e. Would they get an annual donor financial report and be invited to giving club and other events?

You should also consider the possibility of soliciting additional contributions to the designation and balance this against the wishes of the donor and their incentive to add to the amount. For example, on the anniversary of their memorial gift to top up the fund.

There's also the aspect of the relationship of the memorial donor to the institution. i.e. A widow giving a gift in memory of her husband may not be a graduate, and may not even be on the database. Research can help evaluate memorial givers.

A good strategy for this type of donor would be to send a mailing asking them if they wished to be included on future mailings or other institutional communications.

If you are soliciting them regularly, you should evaluate the number of inactive memorial givers and remove them from the list after a certain point.

 
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