In the light of current events and economy, private donations are becoming essential to the functioning of several charities and churches. In general, 80% of donations come from 20% of donors; therefore, finding, cultivating and retaining major gift donors should be a priority for your organization. Retaining donors is also a better strategy in the long haul for nonprofits- than acquiring new donors per campaign.
In article, we will be looking at some strategies to help you retain your major donors.
But before we begin, lets look at who your major donors are what information you can leverage about them.
If you are a small organization, even a modest donation is quickly noticeable for a fundraising project. If you are a bigger organization, you might consider $5000 as a major gift. In addition, even if they are of lower amounts, recurring donations are often more interesting than a larger one-time donation. The recurring donation reveals the interest and long-term loyalty of your donor to your association.
It is important to have this perspective about your own organization and categorize your donors so that you can communicate effectively with them.
- You also want to gather additional information about them. It can be done by using reports from your donation management software or analyzing some of your past campaigns. Questions you want to be looking at are:
- What were the average donation amounts?
- What was the share of recurring donations?
- What were the preferred means of payment by donors?
- What was the median donation (the donation height that separates the lowest 50% of donations from the highest 50% of donations?
By analyzing the information collected, you can easily adjust your next donation campaigns by tailoring your messages precisely to your preferred target.
3 loyalty strategies
Depending upon the size of your organization, you will choose one of these strategies
- Retain donors through integration
Your major donors are generally used to the high standard of the services they consume. For them, being valued is common practice .
If you are a large organization, claim it! It is a pledge of credibility and notoriety of great value in the eyes of donors.
Offer them exclusive privileges with your organization.
Give your donors the opportunity to be put in touch with closed circles. Their network is important. Your donors need to be connected with groups of people who share similar interests.
- Retain donors through gratitude
This strategy is aimed primarily at “traditional” donors who wish to have a direct impact on the cause of your organization. The major asset here is public recognition , a real pillar for this group of donors.
It is advisable to communicate the achievements made possible thanks to the donations received by your association. You can use the following strategies to recognize your major donors.
- Organize events in honor of your major donors to thank them for their donations and their commitment to your organization,
- Share testimonials from beneficiaries,
- Create a dedicated page on your website to highlight their contributions
3. Cultivate potential major gift donors
Culture is the process that leads to the “request” for a major gift. This is an opportunity to introduce potential donors to your organization and the work you do, and to learn about their specific areas of interest.
A good culture includes opportunities for a potential donor to engage with your organization as a leader, by accepting invitations to events or the opportunity to see your work in action. Remember that you are looking for a major gift, then this is time well spent.
Hire a gifts officer or assign a dedicated customer support team to help you make your major donors a priority. We have time and again seen that it retention has major advantages over acquiring new donors (refer infographic below).
A dedicated team will help you:
- Handle major donor prospect records.
- Preparing brochures, presentations.
- Corresponding with the board and other supporters to build the prospect base.
- Presenting major gift appeals to prospects.
- Following up with major donors to continue the relationship.
- Seeking upgrade opportunities when appropriate.
- Organizing recognition events, and more.
Imagine the impact you could have with a little work with the information you already have. You could multiply the amount of major gifts you received during the same fundraising effort.