Capital Campaign/Major Gift Management

Step One

Feasibility Study/Readiness Assessment - The "Discovery" Phase: 3 months

The Feasibility Study/Readiness Assessment is that all-important consultation, discerning answers to fundamentally important questions such as, "Can we take this on at this time?" "Does it make sense to do a capital campaign now?" "Will our key investors support a campaign?" "How much can we raise?"

The Feasibility Study/Readiness Assessment addresses each of those questions and articulates specific recommendations regarding the next steps toward successfully executing a capital campaign/major gift initiative. It is the first step toward a successful funding initiative.

During this phase API will:

  • Talk to your donors, stakeholders and prospects to determine their willingness to support a campaign.
  • Test the preliminary case for support.
  • Determine the philanthropic potential.
  • Develop a campaign strategy and implementation plan.
  • Establish a project budget and timeline.

Step Two

Campaign/Major Gift Preparation: 5-6 months

The all-important process of transferring ownership of your vision and plan to those who will be asked to fund it.

During this phase API will:

  • Involve a broad cross-section of key stakeholders in shaping the vision and finalizing the funding priorities. This could also include a strategic planning process, if required.
  • Finalize a case for support that is compelling, urgent and relevant.
  • Conduct thorough prospect research and create the master prospect list and giving pyramid.
  • Secure volunteer leadership (co-chairs, Steering Committee).
  • Create marketing and major gifts “sales” materials (print and video).
  • Establish a major gift system for managing the project; train staff in effective appointment-setting, solicitation and stewardship behaviors.

Step Three

Major Gift Solicitation: 10-12 months

In this step, the top giving prospects will be asked, in person, for their financial support.

During this phase API will:

  • Organize and execute campaign cultivation events.
  • Create customized solicitation strategies for the top giving prospects.
  • Manage and direct the entire major gift process.
  • Make solicitation calls with you.
  • Complete detailed solicitation call reports.
  • Meet regularly with the campaign Steering Committee.

Step Four

General Solicitation: TBD

In this step, the balance of the constituency is solicited. Traditionally, we recommend that this phase be coordinated with the school's annual fund.

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