Prospect research involves finding publicly available information about a nonprofit's donors or foundations. There is a now a reportthat details the value of prospect research.
Prospect Identification and Wealth Capacity Ratings - This technique is both science and art in finding potential donors and gauging their wealth capacity. While it can never be fully known, there are several variables that will help to assign a capacity rating (which is a potential giving range over a 5 year period). This in turn will help your nonprofit to have a better idea of how much to ask the donor assuming this person is interested in funding your organization. However, this technique can never gauge donor interest as that is determined by speaking with and learning about this person. No matter how high a wealth capacity, without donor interest, a donation is unlikely to be made.
Donor Segmentation - Determine wealth capacity ranges for many potential donors and split into different tiered groups. Can use Excel and Tableau to create visualizations summarizing data.
Donor Profiles - These writeups can be brief or extensive and are written in a compact succinct manner and include relevant biographical variables.
Foundation Profiles - These writeups are derived from 990-PF forms and foundation websites and summarize giving by foundations, list board members, provide submission deadlines, and note any charitable and geographic funding restrictions.
Donor Updates - There are ways to pull information from websites and online databases to provide current alerts on donors, companies, nonprofit trends, etc. This is a way to stay up-to-date without having to search periodically for them.