What Are the Biggest Monthly Gift Challenges?
At the recent sustainer workshop, we asked people present about their biggest monthly gift challenges. You see that staff is a big challenge, along with prioritizing sustainers over donors and getting new monthly donors (acquisition).
I was surprised to see that retention for this group was less challenging.
It’s important to note that the sizes of monthly donor programs, time length sustainer programs in place and experience levels of attendees were all different. Monthly donor payment options also varied. Some had credit card and EFT/ACH/direct debits. Others only offered credit card.
The good news is that as your program grows, staff may become less challenging — because you’ll generate the funds to allow for some extra staff, even if it’s part-time at first.
Two weeks ago during a presentation, I asked the value of 300 monthly donors. Someone answered: “More than $300,000!” And they were not kidding! The bulk of their monthly donors gave $85 a month! You certainly should be able to get some extra staff support for a program at that level. And don’t worry, if you’re getting the $24 a month on average, that’s still worth $87,000, which might be enough to add some staff time…
So, what’s your challenge when it comes to monthly gifts?
Erica Waasdorp is one of the leading experts on monthly giving. She is author of the book "Monthly Giving. The Sleeping Giant." 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 just co-authored the "Monthly Giving Starter and Marketing Kit" with Donor Perfect, and she’s working on her next book called "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 cat, Mientje.