It’s Not Too Late: Get Ready for Monthly Donor Month
There’s never a bad time to convert your constituents to give monthly, but there are two months a year that typically fit better in your overall communication plan: January and September.
“Why September?” you may ask. Because, it’s typically slower with events. Donors are back home, back to school, back to work and in their “routine.” It’s not yet busy with Thanksgiving and holiday preparations.
Things are also “calming down” for a little while for fundraisers before they have to ramp up for Giving Days and year-end and holiday campaigns, both online and offline. You’re most likely already starting to work on it (and so you should), but now’s a good time to look at what you could be doing to make your donors stay longer and become more loyal.
If you’ve always wanted to try taking over the home page for monthly giving for a month, September is a good month for it. If you’ve been following my blogs and tips for a while, you already have a monthly donor page in place, and it’s just a matter of linking to that page and then starting to spread the word. And if you don’t have that in place yet, all it takes is a little focused time to make that happen.
Now is also a good time to reach out to your current monthly donors and ask them for a little testimonial. Just ask them one question: Why are you supporting us with a monthly gift? Then ask them if you can use it to reach out to others.
If they’re willing, create a little video. It doesn’t have to be very fancy, as long as it’s personal and from the heart. Then create a special email message with that video, pop it into your email newsletter, share it on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Vimeo, and put it on your website. All roads lead to the one big ask for September: Give monthly.
If they join, you’ll be able to recognize them as such in your year-end and holiday appeals and email messaging.
So, it’s not too late to declare September as Monthly Donor Month. Then focus on the messaging and the tools that are all consistently leading to generating new monthly donors. Steady wins the race.
You’ll be that farther along with your goals of improving donor retention rates and generating more money to support your wonderful programs. And if you need tools, examples or tips, there’s plenty of help to go around.
Erica Waasdorp is one of the leading experts on monthly giving. She is the president of A Direct Solution, a company serving nonprofit organizations with fundraising and direct marketing needs, with a focus on monthly giving and appeals. She authored "Monthly Giving: The Sleeping Giant" and "Monthly Giving Made Easy." She regularly blogs and presents on fundraising, appeals and monthly giving — in person and through webinars. She is happy to answer any questions you may have about this great way of improving retention rates for your donors.
Erica has over 30 years of experience in nonprofits and direct response. She helped the nonprofits she works with raise millions of dollars through monthly giving programs. She is also very actively supports organizations with annual fund planning and execution, ranging from copywriting, creative, lists, print and mail execution.
When she’s not working or writing, Erica can be found on the golf course (she’s a straight shooter) or quietly reading a book. And if there’s an event with a live band, she and her husband, Patrick, can be found on the dance floor. She also loves watching British drama on PBS. Erica and Patrick have two step sons and a cat, Mientje.