Slowing Down the (Donor) Revolving Door, Part 2
You're way too close to your own communications. Ask someone else to look at them and give you an honest opinion. Don't argue. It's easy to fall in love with our own fundraising efforts or decide "that's just the way it has to be" after a while. Donors aren't usually as enamored (or as forgiving).
Third, figure out where your danger zone is. This is when you get to be a data analyst. Where are more donors likely to stop giving than at any other point? Is it after three gifts or three years? Ten gifts or 10 months? You may have more than one danger zone, but begin with the worst offender.
Now the fun begins. What are creative ways you can reignite the passion your donors once felt before they completely stop giving? A word of caution here: There is no "one size fits all" solution. You have to consider the timing of your danger zone, the makeup of your audience, your mission, your total communications program, etc., and come up with a solution that works within all those boundaries. But to get you started creatively and strategically, I'll share an example — not for you to copy, because it probably won't work for you. Use it instead as a springboard for strategic thinking.
Careful analysis revealed that a donor was more likely to attrite after three years of giving. So, we created a "donor club that really wasn't a donor club." At the end of the third year of giving, donors were welcomed into a special club developed to honor the most loyal donors. Because they had given for three years in a row, they were automatically part of this "inner circle." And, even better, after five years, they could move up to the next level and then move to an even higher level after seven years. But if they missed a year of giving, it was back to the starting line.