Supercharge Your Monthly Giving: 3 Keys to Success
Monthly giving is the holy grail of fundraising, but many nonprofit leaders are frustrated when their programs are stagnant and not growing faster.
So, how do you elevate your monthly giving program to its full potential? Here are three keys that many leaders overlook, but they can make all the difference.
1. Think of Your Program as a Product
Simply asking people to give monthly is not enough — you need to offer them something to join. By giving the program a name and packaging it like a product, you create something distinct and meaningful for donors to become part of.
Think about it. Your monthly giving program is essentially a subscription product, similar to Spotify, Netflix or Hello Fresh. And these successful products typically share some common features, like:
- A distinct, memorable name
- An appealing visual identity
- Strong emotional appeal
- Unique, identifiable features and benefits
- Clear price points
- A well-designed user experience
When you start thinking of your monthly giving program like a product instead of a donor solicitation, you’re heading in the right direction.
2. Sharpen Your Brand Story
What is your organization’s brand story?
If you have trouble answering that question, the odds are you do what most nonprofits do: You primarily talk about what your organization does.
But here’s the problem with that: No one cares!
If you want people to really connect with your work at an emotional level, you need to tell a story of transformation that they want to join.
3. Invite Donors to Join a Community
If you can create a sense of community and belonging, you can build a powerful program.
Monthly donors should feel like they’re part of something bigger than themselves, and that together with other passionate, like-minded people, they’re making a world-changing impact.
So how do you do that? Here are few ideas:
- Send regular content and communications customized for your monthly donors.
- Provide updates on the overall impact of the program.
- Invite monthly donors to special events, briefings or networking opportunities.
- Surprise them with occasional special gifts.
One of the keys to a successful monthly giving program is to keep donors in the fold for as long as possible. If you can keep attrition rates low, you’ll start to see the revenue multiply. But monthly donors won’t stick around without a concerted effort to keep them engaged and create a high emotional barrier for canceling their subscription. Making them feel part of a community — something bigger than themselves — can go a long way toward making that a reality.
Rod Arnold is the founder of Leading Good. As the former chief operating officer of charity: water, Rod helped lead the young organization through a period of tremendous growth. Now he helps other nonprofits grow by applying principles and strategies that are proven to work.