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How to Build a Donor Cultivation Plan for LinkedIn

LinkedIn can be a great place to find potential donors. But to make the most of LinkedIn for fundraising, you need a strong donor cultivation plan for the platform. 

Ready to start raising money on LinkedIn? Here’s how your nonprofit can leverage LinkedIn throughout the donor cultivation cycle.

What is donor cultivation and how can nonprofits use LinkedIn to support it?

Donor cultivation is the process of identifying potential donors and preparing to ask them for a gift. Your donor cultivation plan is your roadmap for navigating this journey. 

Since LinkedIn is home to more than 830 million global members, including countless professionals in executive and senior leadership positions, it can play a key role in the donor cultivation cycle. You can use LinkedIn to search for people who have an affinity for your cause, research and qualify them based on information on their LinkedIn profile, establish a connection, make an ask, and even grow the relationship over time. 

How can nonprofits find prospective donors on LinkedIn?

As you get started raising money on LinkedIn, you can use the search bar at the top left-hand side of the website to identify potential donors. Depending on who you’re trying to reach, you could type in a specific job title or a keyword relating to your cause. Hit enter, then select “People” from the list of options below the search bar, and use the “All filters” option to narrow down your results. 

This will generate a list of people who match your search criteria. From there, you can start reviewing their profiles to qualify them and determine the best way to engage them. 

For more advanced donor cultivation features, consider investing in LinkedIn Sales Navigator, which is available at up to a 50% discount for eligible nonprofits. This solution gives you access to advanced search filters, an easy way to map your network and identify the best path forward, and more. 

What else should be included in a LinkedIn donor cultivation plan?

Identifying potential donors is only one element of a strong donor cultivation plan. You can also leverage LinkedIn to build the relationship both before and after you first approach the prospect. After all, not every prospect will give right away, and others may not commit to a repeat gift upfront, so you’ll want to plan ahead to keep these prospects warm and maximize your efforts. 

Here are some ways you can use LinkedIn throughout the donor cultivation cycle: 

  • Invite prospects to follow your nonprofit on LinkedIn. Post regularly to keep your organization on their mind. Consider creating a LinkedIn newsletter, too — everyone who follows your nonprofit’s LinkedIn Page will be prompted to subscribe, and those who do will get a notification every time you post.  

  • Keep track of prospects’ activity. Check the “Activity” section of their LinkedIn profile regularly to look for signals that it’s a good time to approach or follow up. You can also hit the “Follow” button at the top of their profile (it may be under “More”) to get notifications about their activity. 

  • Get prospects’ attention with personalized InMail messages. If you have LinkedIn Premium or LinkedIn Sales Navigator, you can send InMails (direct messages) to anyone on LinkedIn. Review the prospect’s LinkedIn profile before crafting your message to make it feel warm and personal. Be sure to mention any connection they have to your cause.

Elevate your donor cultivation efforts with LinkedIn

Whether you use it for identifying potential donors, researching prospects, building relationships, or all of the above, LinkedIn can be an invaluable part of any donor cultivation plan.

Take your donor cultivation efforts to the next level with LinkedIn Sales Navigator. Contact our team to learn more.