5 Insights into Nonprofit Donor Engagement According to More Money for More Good Research | Miratel Solutions

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5 Insights into Nonprofit Donor Engagement According to More Money for More Good Research

Nonprofit fundraising has evolved significantly over the past two decades and nonprofits face a quandary on how to increase funds and engagement with a donor base that is more frugal and selective with whom they support. This is why nonprofit research and reporting is essential to better understand the needs, wants and mindset of supporters and I have covered a variety of reports here such as the latest Blackbaud IndexHow America Gives Report, the 2012 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report and Engaging Board Members in Fundraising special report. Recently GuideStar USA and Hope Consulting released research titled ‘More Money for More Good’ that contained some valuable insights that can help nonprofits attract and motivate new and existing donors.

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    Image courtesy of guidestar.org

    Donor Types – The research identified six donor types based on their motivations to give to or support a cause as: the repayer, the casual donor, the high impact donor, the faith based donor, the ‘see the difference’ donor and the donor with personal ties. Of these almost a quarter of respondents (23%) classified as a repayer according to the research’s first part conducted in 2010, while the casual giver came second with 18% and the remaining were not far behind in the 13-16% range. Clearly donors will have their own personal reasons why they give and it’s critical that nonprofits understand who they are, what motivates them and how this impacts current and future fundraising initiatives.

  2. Research – Only 33% of responding donors conducted any research prior to making a donation and of those respondents, 63% helped make a decision as to whether or not to donate. Information mostly researched by individual donors includes the charity’s financials (74%) and effectiveness (71%) so it’s important that this critical information is readily available to potential donors. Two main formats that donors prefer to see this information is through a “Detailed Rating” similar to consumer reports (56%) or online/the web (51%) through either a 3rd party nonprofit information service or evaluator.
  3. Collect – It’s essential for nonprofits to collect and store the information that donors most want to see. Information should include the nonprofits approach, the results that will be expected, effectiveness of the organization, performance history and overall impact. The challenge is collecting corresponding data that can quantify the results and provide meaningful information. Ultimately it’s about collecting information that best tells your organization’s story and compels the prospective donor to give.
  4. Communicate – How and through which channels you communicate your organization’s information is as critical as the information you have collected. Prominently placing impact information on all direct mail marketing pieces, electronic communications and digital marketing will ensure that you are delivering the right information to new and existing donors. Integrating 3rd party ratings and endorsements to donors will often satisfy their need for a recommendation or seal of approval through their own research.
  5. Connect – To improve overall fundraising performance it’s important to have strong connections with donors. Understanding and identifying which donor categories your donor base falls in and segmenting and sending them customized messaging based on their motivator(s) will strengthen the connection and ultimately produce stronger results than segmenting through simple demographics such as age and gender. Also following up with a thank you customized based on their motivator(s) will signal to your donor that you appreciate their contribution and are paying attention to their needs. That will give you the best opportunity to build loyalty to ensure that the connection is maintained.

According to the research, for nonprofits better meeting the needs of their donor base up to $15 billion in donations can be moved to higher performing nonprofits. Certainly nonprofits have the potential to improve their donor revenue provided they remain transparent and provide captivating information that is easily accessible and via the format and channels that donors want most. Read the full More Money for More Good report for more detailed information.


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Miratel Solutions is a Toronto call centreeBusiness, and letter shop mail house specializing in professional fundraising services including telephone fundraisingonline fundraisinglottery servicesdonation cagingdonation processing and other donor management services. We are committed to our CSR business values in all contact centre services and mail house operations and advancing the missions of the nonprofits we proudly serve.

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