Some donors don’t need recognition. God bless ’em.
But many donors — especially corporate donors — want to see their name. And not just in a thank you letter, but on an event program. On your Web site. On the back of a t-shirt. On top of your building.
But the latter doesn’t just have to be for capital campaigns. In fact, even for capital campaigns, you should limit the number of years that a name can stay on a room (you probably should continue to offer perpetual naming rights for the buildings themselves and major “wings” within them, but smaller areas can be sold for 1-3 year periods).
Just take a walk around your facility and note every place that might make sense for a donor’s name to fall. The reception area, the board room, the staff offices, the breakroom.
Go back to your desk and assess the “value” of each of them from the donor’s perspective – particularly from the corporate donor perspective, if any of their customers walk by – and match them up.
“Our 2012 reception area sponsor is MR. & MRS. BEN E. FACTOR.”
You might find a few good opportunities to present to corporate donors who may not otherwise support your mission. Within your proposal, be sure to cite the number of eyeballs that will see their name (i.e. “every year, over 10,000 people walk through the doors of our facility and will read this sign on our front door as they enter”).