Phoenix Children’s Foundation: Partnering with Philanthropists to Deliver World-Class Care


Since first opening its doors in 1983 with just 124 pediatric beds, Phoenix Children’s Hospital in Arizona has grown to become one of the most acclaimed specialist pediatric hospitals in the world. 

Today, Phoenix Children’s provides specialist care across a broad range of disciplines, from cardiology to neurosurgery. As a nonprofit institution, Phoenix Children’s relies on the philanthropy of individual donors and charitable organizations to continue its life-saving work. 

For Chris Slauter, a Senior Specialist in Corporate Prospect Research at Phoenix Children’s Foundation, this presents significant challenges as well as considerable opportunities. 

Many organizations are eager to donate to Phoenix Children’s, but prospecting to find such donors can be a time- and labor-intensive process. Faced with ambitious fundraising targets, Slauter began looking for ways he could prospect for new donors more effectively, raise more money for Phoenix Children’s Foundation, and ultimately, help the hospital save more young lives.

Identifying Generosity at Scale

As Phoenix Children’s Foundation’s corporate prospect researcher, Slauter is responsible for identifying prospective leads that can be routed to the foundation’s corporate development officers — the equivalent of the business development representatives found in many for-profit businesses.

Just as corporate salespeople typically have areas of expertise, so too do the corporate development officers at Phoenix Children’s Foundation. No two donors are exactly alike, which makes cultivating meaningful relationships with prospective donors crucial to the foundation’s mission.

“I maintain their portfolios, and help identify and distribute leads that align with their specialty in the fundraising space,” Slauter says. 

The reasons an individual or organization may want to donate to Phoenix Children’s are as varied as the conditions the hospital’s doctors, nurses, and support staff work tirelessly to treat. 

Some want to establish a lasting legacy. Others hope to repay the kindness they experienced at Phoenix Children’s themselves. 

Whatever the motivation behind a donor’s generosity, it’s vital for the Foundation’s corporate development officers to understand those motivations and nurture burgeoning leads into lasting philanthropic partnerships.

“With ZoomInfo, we have a finger on the pulse of the industries in our area and what’s happening with the people we’ve already developed relationships with. We’re also able to see who’s coming here, who’s setting up shop that wants to be a part of the community of Phoenix – and what better way than by partnering with Phoenix Children’s?”

Chris Slauter

Corporate Prospect Researcher

Gaining Greater Insights Quickly

One of Slauter’s greatest challenges was gaining greater insight into prospective corporate-level donors. To his dismay, Slauter soon learned that many of the prospecting tools on the market focused on individual contacts but lacked the organizational data needed to identify strong opportunities for his team.

“One thing we’ve always really looked for is a ‘one-stop shop’ corporate prospecting research tool,” Slauter says. “There aren’t a lot out there, a lot of the tools are focused on individual prospecting.”

The challenges that Slauter and his team faced are not too different from the hurdles corporate salespeople regularly navigate. And the Foundation’s prospecting team uses similar tools to overcome those challenges – including intent signals, such as key hires and fundraising announcements.

Slauter’s CEO originally tasked him with researching ZoomInfo as a prospective solution after learning it could be used to surface real-time data on mergers and acquisitions — a signal that could be significant for Slauter’s team. Upon closer research, however, Slauter realized ZoomInfo offered much more than the organizational-level data he and his team needed.

While Slauter’s research had shown that ZoomInfo could be a significant asset for his team and the foundation’s mission, it took some effort on his part to convince the foundation’s leadership team that it was worth pursuing. To some, ZoomInfo’s potential was just too good to be true.

“Some were skeptical of the intent data,” Slauter says. “Marcelle Friendt, the Director of Prospect Research and I had to sell it to our leadership team. We wanted to get a decent sample size, and just see the power of this tool. Once the data came back, we found more layers and indicators that made us realize what potential there was in using this tool.”

Building Relationships Together

To prove that ZoomInfo could deliver, Slauter worked closely with a business development specialist on his team to identify close-match prospective donors using ZoomInfo data. 

The results spoke for themselves. 

ZoomInfo helped them quickly identify the owner of a regional chain of restaurants, a task that had proven impossible with their former tools. The business owner got back to the team within 20 minutes — a call that resulted in a six-figure, first-year commitment.

“He tells us, ‘Phoenix Children’s has been in the back of my mind for years,’” Slauter says. “‘I’ve been wanting to do something with you guys for so long, and I just get busy and it slips my mind, I’m so glad that you reached out.’ We had a discovery meeting a week later – usually, those meetings take months to set up.”

That was just the beginning. Using ZoomInfo, Slauter’s test user went from booking just one or two discovery meetings per week to five or six — sometimes more. Within two quarters of implementing ZoomInfo, the foundation had raised more than $50,000 in net-new donations from brand-new partners. Not only that, but Slauter’s team has halved its average prospecting time.

Beyond the immediate revenue and productivity gains made possible by ZoomInfo, Slauter and his team are finding new ways to collaborate with others across the organization to capture additional fundraising opportunities using technology.

“We’ve been able to collaborate across so many departments here with our marketing team,” Slauter says. “They create special kids’ menus for Uber Eats that generate and embed QR codes on menus so we can have peer-to-peer fundraising. Anybody at a participating restaurant can just scan those QR codes and donate as much as they like.”

Phoenix Children’s depends on the generosity of its donor partners to provide the transformative, life-saving care for which the hospital is renowned around the world. ZoomInfo is proud to help the hospital and its foundation find new ways to reach prospective donors and secure vital funding for its work.

“With ZoomInfo, we have a finger on the pulse of the industries in our area and what’s happening with the people we’ve already developed relationships with,” Slauter says. “We’re also able to see who’s coming here, who’s setting up shop that wants to be a part of the community of Phoenix – and what better way than by partnering with Phoenix Children’s?”

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