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The Biggest Lie About Naming Recognition

If you were donating one million dollars to a new hospital, which room would you want named after you? The nursery? The IT department? The third floor restrooms?

When people do capital campaigns for a new building, they think that the rooms that are the most expensive to build should be the top rooms of the recognition levels. This is a Big. Fat. Lie.

Donors don’t care about how expensive the room is. They care about the emotional value of the room. They care about how much it is used, where it is located, and who is going to see it. Without a doubt, an IT department is one of the most expensive rooms in a building. But all the donor sees is a lonely, computer-filled room with techies getting LED screen tans.

Donors want the emotionally expensive rooms like the atrium, a garden, or a gymnasium. Rooms like that have a feel-good vibe, and that’s where donors want to leave their legacy. The operating room may cost twenty times more than the waiting room, but who sees the operating room? Donors will pay more for the emotional value of the waiting room they can see.

So, when you’re dividing your building up for naming levels, don’t do it by price. Take into account where each room is located, how much traffic it will get, and the positive connotations associated with the room. If you were giving one million dollars, would you want the family birth center, the atrium cafe, or the instrument sterilization room named after you?

The best rooms are the ones that feel the best, not the ones that cost the most.

Is your naming strategy upside down? Dickerson, Bakker & Associates will help you structure the most effective naming levels and keep your campaign energy high. Contact us today!

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