The sgENGAGE Podcast Episode 166: Planning for a Capital Campaign


Capital campaigns. Maybe you’re in one. Maybe you’re thinking about one. Maybe you’re wrapping one up now. Maybe you have one in the past that you’d like to forget about. Either way, they are important. Capital campaigns can be a tremendous asset to an organization as nearly a century of their history shows.

In today’s episode, we’ll explore the subject of capital campaigns in more depth with guest Amy Eisenstein, CEO and co-founder of The Capital Campaign Toolkit. Listen in to hear what Amy has to say about the key questions you need to answer to get a capital campaign started, the elements of a successful capital campaign, and the state of capital campaigns in the COVID-19 world.


Topics Discussed in This Episode:

  • What a capital campaign is
  • Running a capital campaign without eating your annual fund
  • Key questions an organization needs to answer to start a capital campaign
  • How long a capital campaign should take
  • Your campaign objectives
  • Why you should be thinking big
  • Elements of success for a capital campaign
  • What Amy has found works and doesn’t work through experience
  • Which donors are most likely to make or break your campaign
  • The state of capital campaigns in the COVID-19 world
  • How organizations need to adjust due to the pandemic
  • What listeners can learn from the capital campaign toolkit

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Amy Eisenstein

Capital Campaign Toolkit

Article: Planning a Capital Campaign: The Essential First Steps



“There’s always a concern at organizations that a capital campaign will cannibalize an annual campaign or annual fundraising, and what we’ve found is that simply isn’t true.”

“If you want that Olympic size pool, put it in those plans. We can cut it out later if we figure out you can’t raise the money for it. But now’s the time to dream big.”

“You need to have donors who have the capacity to give those lead gifts in order to have that element of a possibility, a real possibility, for success.”