Grant Administration: Marketing

Few businesses will donate to a project because they’re looking for a tax break. They’ll donate because they support an organization and believe in that organization’s project. Position the tax credits to sweeten the pot and leverage up financial support.

Organizations should be prepared to talk to a prospective donor about what impact a project will have on the community, and how the state tax credit and federal charitable donation will benefit a donor’s bottom-line. This includes both a monetary benefit discussion, as well as public relations opportunities to generate new business. Direct them to CDFA’s online tax calculator to experiment will what their out-of-pocket costs might be with different pledge amounts.

The local Chamber of Commerce can be a great resource for a list of businesses in a project area to widen a fundraising campaign. Presentations can also be used to highlight a project and the tax benefits available for local community organizations such as Rotary, Kiwanis, Chamber, or others to generate community-wide interest in a project. The organization’s board of directors is another resource to tap. Many board members have community contacts and can assist in “selling” project’s tax credits to interested donors.

Develop effective, professional-looking fundraising materials; these could include:

  • Presentation folder with a picture of the project on the front.
  • Project description, with renderings or pictures of what it will look like.
  • A simplified budget for potential donors to review.

Utilize local media to let the community know what a project is about and to generate excitement before a fundraising campaign kickoff. Offer to include donors in press releases and promotional marketing. Make sure that all donors are publicly thanked, as it will not only give a donor publicity, but will also provide another opportunity to promote a project.

Follow up with businesses that have been solicited and have been given the project information and marketing materials to in order to get firm pledge commitments. It is important to keep a record of contacts made and results, as these will need to be submitted monthly to CDFA during the fundraising stage. If any assistance is needed, please contact CDFA Project Manager assigned to the project.

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