Having Gift Aid declarations from your donors is key to maximising your rebates from HMRC and claiming the full amount you're entitled to. In fact, we discovered that most charities are missing out on an 50% extra Gift Aid - so we wrote all about claiming missing Gift Aid in this blog post.
Just like you might run a campaign to raise funds, you can also run a campaign to increase your Gift Aid declarations. With Beacon forms, all you need to do is send out the link to your form and the rest will happen automatically - no data entry, no searching for payments to then add to a claim, Beacon will take of it for you!
Step 1: Create a campaign (Optional)
If you plan to regularly run Gift Aid declaration campaigns, and would like to track the effectiveness of each compared to the others, you can create a Campaign.
Tip: If you just want to see the number of Gift Aid declarations over time, you won't need to create a campaign, and can simply create a chart.
Head to Campaigns in your sidebar
Click Add campaign
Give your campaign a title (such as 'Gift Aid declarations July 2020), and any other relevant details. Click Create.
Go to Gift Aid declarations in your sidebar
Create a new field called 'Campaign', with the type 'Point to another record', and select 'Campaigns' from the 'Add types' dropdown.
Tip: Click to learn more about campaigns in Beacon
Step 2: Create a form to collect declarations
Creating a dedicated Gift Aid declaration form is the the same as creating any other form:
Go to Forms in your sidebar, and create a new Signup form
Follow the steps here to add a Gift Aid declaration section to your new form
If you created a campaign in Step 1, add that campaign in the fixed data section for Gift Aid declarations
(optional) Embed the form in your website
Step 3: Find people who don't have Gift Aid declarations
You could send out your form to all the contacts in your database, but you'll likely already have declarations from many of them so it's usually best to target just those who haven't given you one yet.
Go to your People records
Filter people for those whose number of 'Related Gift Aid declarations' is 0. In plain English, this will show us a list of people who don't have a declaration in Beacon.
(optional) Add any additional filters you would like. For example: only people with donation type payments (your existing donors), people with donations over a certain value, excluding trust or business contacts etc.
Step 4: Send the link to your form
Mailchimp or Dotdigital
Tip: See our guides on connecting Mailchimp and Dotdigital if you haven't already enabled these apps
Select all the people in Step 3.
Click the bulk actions menu (the three dots), and then Export to Mailchimp or Export to Dotdigital
Add a tag for Mailchimp subscribers, or add to a specific Dotdigital address book, so you can identify them.
Open your Mailchimp or Dotdigital account, create your email campaign, and include the link to your new form
Direct postal mail
If you'd prefer to send letters to some or all of your campaign targets, you can use Beacon's documents feature to create a 'mail merge' with your donors' details. Be sure to include the link to your Beacon form, and possibly a contact number to call if they'd rather give their declaration over the phone (you'll need to manually add the declaration).
What happens next?
Once a person has submitted a Gift Aid declaration, any payments that were otherwise eligible will immediately be added to the current open Gift Aid claim, ready to be submitted at the end of the month.
You'll see the 'Gift Aid claim' and 'Gift Aid declaration' fields automatically populate once the payment has met all the eligibility criteria.