Researching Potential Major Donors As with so many industries, 80% of your fundraising income is likely to come from 20% (or less) of your donors.  These people tend to be high-net worth individuals.  But how do you find them?  Here’s a few techniques: Methods for Finding Potential Major Donors (PMDs) If all you have is your database and some time, then you can try the following: Job Descriptions: does you organisation record job titles of members of your community?  If so, search for people in typically high paid professions such as Investment Banking or Law or search by job titles, such as ‘CEO’, Managing Director, etc.  A word of caution: some companies suffer from job title inflation and almost anyone can be a ‘Vice President’ or ‘Senior Manager’ and this does not necessarily mean they are PMDs.  See if you can find them on the business networking site, LinkedIn - people list their entire career histories here. House Names and Values: As a quick search, look for anyone on your database who has words like ‘Hall’ or ‘Manor’ in their house name.  They are likely to be expensive.  Alternatively, if members of your potential donor community live nearby, think about roads where most houses are very expensive.  Do you have anyone living on those roads?  To check if you are right, you can find the most recent valuation of any residential property in the UK on websites like  You can register for free.  Bear in mind that some people may have an expensive house, but be asset rich, cash poor. If you have a large enough budget... Use Wealth Profiling: There are a number of professional firms who can screen your data and then highlight high net-worth individuals and segment your constituents into wealth brackets.  Some firms provide you with access to numerous wealth databases so you can check names yourself, whilst others will add the information directly into your fundraising database.  This is not only useful for major donors, but can also be used to set ask amounts for your entire community during a direct mail or telethon campaign.  Well known companies in this sector include: Prospecting for Gold and CCR. FIND DEVELOPMENT JOBS!   Whether you’re looking to start a career in development or are already an experienced practitioner, you can find vacancies today! FURTHER RESOURCES ON FUNDRAISING AND ALUMNI RELATIONS   We’ve listed some of the best books and resources available to help you become an outstanding development professional. See recommended Development reading Researching Potential Major Donors © Orier Digital Limited 2012