CAPITAL CAMPAIGN MAGIC - REVEALING THE SECRETS OF SUCCESS
4 Things You Need to Know to Create Your Capital Campaign Budget
1. Create Your Capital Campaign Budget Early
We all know the phrase, “It takes money to raise money,” yet too often I see nonprofit organizations go into a capital campaign without first creating a budget for the campaign itself.
Don’t make this mistake – it’ll end up costing you more money down the road and it’ll make your campaign much less effective!
Instead, create a preliminary campaign budget early in your campaign process – and include the campaign costs in your ultimate campaign goal. For example, let’s say you want to raise $5,000,000 and you estimate the cost of the campaign at $500,000. In that case, your working campaign goal will actually be $5,500,000. (You’ll have to front-end some money to pay for early campaign expenses, but you can include these expenses in your campaign goal as well.)
What will you be spending the money on? I’ll cover the details in another post, and a sample campaign budget is included below. For more detailed information, including several sample capital campaign budgets, consider buying my book.
(Gail and I will be going over capital campaign finances in our Capital Campaign Magic coaching program! Submit an application to be considered for the April sessions.)
2. Calculate Your Initial Campaign Budget as a Percent of Your Campaign Goal
The budget for launching a successful capital campaign is calculated as a percentage of your fundraising goal – the larger the goal, the smaller the percentage. Why? Because some campaign costs will be the same, no matter how big or small your goal. These same costs, though, will be come to a larger percentage of your goal if your goal is a smaller one.
Let’s take a look at the ballpark:
If your campaign is small — $2,000,000 or less, you can expect to spend 15% of the goal. If you’re raising between $3,000,000 and $5,000,000, though, expect to spend around 10% of that amount on your campaign.
And if your goal is closer to $10,000,000, you can expect to spend around 4% or 5% to raise those funds.
Once you’ve come up with a basic estimate based on percentages, run the numbers the other way and build budget from the ground up with a list of everything you think you’ll need to make your capital campaign a success.
Canopy Arts Desk
Tammy Hampel (Isaacson)
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