5 Ways to Improve Your Donor Retention

February 20, 2016

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How many of your donors continue to contribute to your organization year after year? High donor retention is extremely valuable to any organization, and it is much less costly in the long run to maintain existing donors than acquire new ones. Unfortunately, nearly three quarters of new donors do not donate more than once. Here are some key moves to thwart that trend and up your retention.

1. Say thank you!

Thanking your donors is a must-do. The most effective thanking is prompt and involves communication across as many channels as possible: an email, a handwritten note, a phone call, or an acknowledgement on social media or your mailing list. If the donation was made online, it is especially important to send a thank you that goes beyond a single email so the donor does not feel disconnected by the anonymity of online donating. The content of your thank yous should be as personal as possible, especially if you are thanking a longer term supporter.

2. Give your supporters the right tools to make donations.

Technology should not get in the way of your supporters’ ability to contribute. Make use of an online donations platform that is modern, appealing, and convenient. Flipcause’s technology makes donating simple and easy with seamless user experience. Get rid of older, outdated tools that are hard for your supporters to navigate.

3. Connect with your donors on social media.

Nurture ongoing relationships with your donors by engaging with and responding to them online. Retweet them if they say something meaningful about your cause, and thoughtfully reply to their comments and questions on any platform. Keeping up these conversations with your donors will help to make them feel like they have valuable input and investment in your organization.

4. Engage your donors creatively.

Invite donors to get involved in ways that don’t always involve a donation, such as through volunteering, participating at events, helping to promote your cause on social media, writing guest posts for your blog, or interviewing for story content for your marketing materials.

5. Let your supporters know their impact and your organization’s successes.

What are the outcomes of your campaigns? Your donors want to see measurable results, with stories, photos, and videos. Frequently report back on your progress by sharing stories of the impact of your donors’ contributions and the efforts of your organization. This can be great content for your newsletter, blog, social media, and website.

Remember that donor retention is about building and maintaining your relationships with your donors through many avenues and regular contact. As you would in any relationship, maintain honesty and commitment, communicate promptly, thoughtfully, and jargon-free, and always be as gracious as possible.

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