First, for a Successful Capital Campaign: Think Bigger!
Like it or not, your organization will likely only be able to pull off a successful capital campaign once a decade. When brought in to provide a strategy for a capital campaign, the first thing I do is question the total amount sought and to what end. I then ask a series of questions aimed at uncovering other capital needs often not considered in the initial planning: furniture, IT, signage, landscaping, ADA compliance, etc. This investigation often reveals that the needs to complete the goals of the project completely often will require 25% or more funding than the initial target, which is often tied solely to the primary objective. So cast a wide net with your capital campaign to cover all costs needed to see the entire vision fulfilled.
A Multidimensional Approach to Your Capital Campaign
Smart business plans implement opportunities to generate multiple income streams and a successful capital campaign needs to do the same. High-net-worth individuals, foundation and government grants, major gifts from the organization’s community, campaign-specific events, and entry-level giving from a broad spectrum of supporters all need to be factored into your plan. Each of these funding targets has a different set of needs and will demand a separate strategic approach.
Build Out Capital Campaign Subcommittees
Instead of one capital campaign committee, I recommend having a different subcommittee for each separate audience identified in the multidimensional approach. The subcommittee focused on high-net-worth individuals can develop and plan small cultivation events and site visits. The foundation and government grant subcommittee can provide the needed research, outreach, and proposal writing. Breaking up the tasks this way for each target audience allows for more focus and provides each subcommittee with a clear scope of work.
Map out a Timeline
A detailed timeline that includes the dates of each phase, as well as the end date of the capital campaign, is essential. A main component of the timeline is identifying when the campaign will move from the soft launch phase to the public launch, which will involve publishing a capital campaign landing page on your website, sending out emails to your contacts, sending press releases, and a holding launch event.
If you or your organization could use a consultation on building a successful capital campaign strategy, please reach out below.