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5 Tips to Drive Donations

5 Tips to Drive Donations

canstock3428652How do you drive donations in a saturated market where everyone is competing for attention? This is the question that keeps development officers up at night.

Unfortunately, most organizations are not lucky enough to be a part of a viral fundraising effort. Remember the ice-bucket challenge back in 2014? That fundraising effort helped the ALS Association raise $115 million that year. (As an aside, those donations actually helped scientists discover a new gene tied to ALS.)

For those organizations that don’t have a viral campaign in the works :), let’s focus on what you can influence:

  1. Mail: surprisingly direct mail can boost your fundraising efforts. Direct mail drives people to go online and donate, but there’s more you can do to create a stellar donor experience. MobileCause shares that 35% of direct mail recipients prefer to go online. And I’ve definitely said this before, but direct mail is even more effective if you’re targeting millennials – 50% of that group prefers to donate online.
  2. Think Mobile: 51% of most website traffic is now coming from mobile devices, and that number continues to rise. It is crucial that your donation page is optimized for mobile so people can make easy donations with just a few clicks or taps from any device. Also, be sure that your donation call-to-action (CTA) is clear and concise. This will help your donors who are reading your messages on a smartphone to quickly and easily respond.
  3. Keep your Database in Tip-Top Shape: This is important as 14% of Americans change their addresses every year. MobileCause.com says that donor renewal mail yields a 3.7% response rate, so that “warm list” ROI is about $0.20 spent for every dollar raised. That’s a pretty decent ROI.
  4. Create Campaign Specific Landing Pages: By creating specific pages for your direct mail, you will easily be able to measure the results of your campaign, and that’s important to guide future decisions. Plus, you can personalize it with a URL specific to each donor.
  5. Thank Donors: Send thank you letters or emails to your donors. Most of them are interested in seeing how their money is being used. Communicate that message with videos, photos and testimonials to show the world all of the good you are doing.

We work with a lot of associations at AGS and I’m happy to strategize with you around your next marketing campaign. Just reach out.