The key to success with monthly giving programs is stewardship. Building and maintaining strong relationships with monthly donors are essential.
People often ask me, is it important to thank recurring donors every month? The answer depends on how they gave in the first place. When someone becomes a recurring donor offline, say through direct mail, telemarketing, face-to-face, TV or any other "offline" medium, I always recommend sending an immediate snail-mail thank-you letter for joining but then after that NOT to send donors monthly thank-you letters.
For online credit card recurring donors, where a monthly thank-you email is typically generated automatically, I recommend something slightly different.
Recent reports indicate good signs for 2014 fundraising. Despite the collective optimism for fundraising success, nonprofits must overcome a number of hurdles to get there. Here are some stats and three ways your nonprofit can drive giving gains this year.
Nonprofit monthly giving is awesome. It results in increased donor retention and loyalty. But here’s the drawback: If your organization is still in acquisition mode, instead of all-out gratitude mode, your program can end up being one big flop. As Joe Garecht notes, “Stopping a monthly giving relationship takes a proactive step from the donor, one they are unlikely to take unless they really mean to stop their support for a particular nonprofit.”
When you don’t love your monthly donors, you could end up with angry donors.
During their session at the Association of Fundraising Professionals 51st International Conference on Fundraising in San Antonio, "How to Hang on to Your Donors: Successful Donor-Retention Strategies," Amnesty International Canada's Rosemary Oliver and Harvey McKinnon, president of Harvey McKinnon Associates, said the very best way to keep donors is to sign them up for monthly giving.
Launching a monthly giving program can be a powerful strategy for nonprofits both large and small. Studies over the past decade have shown that monthly givers give more money and stay with a nonprofit longer than non-monthly givers. Here are some of the reasons why monthly giving is so important for every nonprofit: Monthly donors give more, while monthly giving programs build strong relationships, provide a stable foundation for your nonprofit and lower fundraising costs.
In retaining your monthly donors, here’s the first step: Denounce the set-and-forget mindset. Good, now that that is complete, you can develop a strategy that actively engages your monthly donors and reminds them why their gifts are critical to the population your organization serves. And if you don’t, how will you ever upgrade their monthly gift amounts? Learn more about International Justice Mission’s annual upgrade strategy.
Monthly giving is probably the one fundraising program surrounded by the highest number of myths. All of these myths are used as reasons not to start … Well, if the many recent discussions about retention are any indication, you have every reason to run, not walk, to get started with monthly giving. Simply because the impact on retention is huge!
Did you know that those nonprofits that started years ago are now seeing between 90 percent and 98 percenty of their monthly donors still with them?