The Best Response When a Monthly Donor Calls to Cancel

Posted by on May 24, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

A monthly donor calling up to cancel is a dreaded call for any organization. It’s something nobody wants to hear. But it’s important to respond in the right way. Bloomerang’s Steven Shattuck posted an article on his experience canceling as a monthly donor. So, let’s provide you with the best response when this happens at your organization. This requires you to get all of the people answering the phones at your organization in a room for a few...

Read More

You Can Convert Monthly Donors From Credit Cards to Automatic Bank Withdrawals

Posted by on Apr 22, 2017 in Recurring giving |

A few weeks ago, NonProfit Pro shared an interesting NACHA case study on the long-term retention of those donors who give automatically through their bank account, also called EFT, Direct Debit, Direct Payment via ACH or automatic bank withdrawal. (Note, for the rest of this post, I’ll refer to this as EFT.) So you may say, “Why is this important if we only offer monthly donors via credit or debit card now?” The answer is because if you can...

Read More

Should you convert members to monthly donors?

Posted by on Apr 15, 2017 in Case Studies, Recurring giving |

This post was written for and published at Nonprofit Pro. Some of the most successful (and perhaps even leading) nonprofits that are converting members to monthly donors (often called sustainers or sustaining partners) are public television and public radio stations, all over the country. They realized several years ago that moving regular members to monthly donors had several major advantages: • Members who give automatically through their...

Read More

Poke the Monthly Donor Box…

Posted by on Apr 10, 2017 in Recurring giving |

I just finished Seth Godin’s book, “Poke the Box.” As always, it’s terrific, short and to the point. It really got me thinking: Godin tells us to have the initiative to start. Turn fear into action because the consequence of doing nothing is much scarier and is certainly going to raise less money! It seems to me that this approach should be applied especially to monthly donors. There seems to be a fear of starting, and it prevents organizations...

Read More

Treat your monthly donor as your best friend …

Posted by on Apr 3, 2017 in Recurring giving |

If you’re an organization that has had monthly donors for a while, you’ll know that some of your monthly donors can and will stay with you for decades! Of course that in part depends on their age when joining. Typically, I’m seeing that those donors continue to give monthly for 5 years to 7 years. That’s great news, isn’t it? If you treat your monthly donors like your best friends, the news will get even better! Because these “small” donors...

Read More

The Top 2 Must-Dos for Monthly Donors…

Posted by on Mar 26, 2017 in Recurring giving |

This post was recently featured in Nonprofit Pro In one of the webinars I present on monthly giving, one of the polls is: “How often do you ask someone to become a monthly donor?” The answer in some 50 percent of cases is not at all. Twenty percent say once a year and others more often than that—maybe twice or three times. Well, here’s your number one must-do when it comes to bringing in new monthly donors: Must-Do No. 1: You must ASK for it As...

Read More

What’s the best amount to ask for in monthly giving?

Posted by on Mar 18, 2017 in Recurring giving |

This week’s #MonthlyDonorMonday tip is focused on the best amount to ask for in monthly giving. One of the attendees of my webinar last week sent me a follow up question and I know it comes up a lot. What’s the best amount to ask for in monthly giving can really be broken into two additional questions: Should you ask for odd or even amount?  For example; does $9 work better than $10? What’s the lowest amount you can ask for?...

Read More

3 Tips for Creating Monthly Donor Promises

Posted by on Mar 11, 2017 in Recurring giving |

This post was written for and published by Nonprofit Pro.  One of the first things I recommend when you’re starting to work on growing your monthly donor program is to create the “promises” you’ll make to the monthly donors when they join. What will you send them? How are you planning to recognize them? So let’s begin with the end in mind. Think through the thank you opportunities then decide what you’ll tell them and what you’ll keep as a...

Read More

To ask for one-time gifts or monthly gifts… That’s the question!

Posted by on Mar 5, 2017 in Recurring giving |

This post first appeared on the Donor Perfect blog. Many nonprofits struggle with the decision to make the move and ask for monthly gifts. Here’s what I hear from organizations when I ask them about their monthly donor program: “I need one time gifts.” “I can’t focus on monthly gifts right now. They’re too small to concern myself with.” “I only have so little time. Why would I worry about small donors?” “It’s all about the net and monthly...

Read More

10 Sad Facts from a Monthly Donor Retention Check-up

Posted by on Jan 30, 2017 in Case Studies, Recurring giving |

Be forewarned, this is a sad story… but it can have a good ending! As you know from the Fundraising Effectiveness Project, based upon 2015 data, the typical donor retention rates were 46%, which is why monthly donors are so important as monthly donor retention rates are much higher. The good news is that more and more nonprofits have started a monthly donor program. And as monthly donor programs mature, upgrades, reactivations and...

Read More

Are you following #MonthlyDonorMonday?

Posted by on Jan 16, 2017 in Recurring giving |

A few months ago, I started promoting #MonthlyDonorMonday. All I ask of you is to focus one half hour every Monday on your monthly donor program. Of course, you’re totally welcome to do more, but if nothing else, start with half an hour. You can read a MonthlyDonorMonday tip. You can test your web site. You can see what other organizations are doing. You can create a monthly donor page. You can start working on a monthly donor plan.  You...

Read More

THE # 1 Fundamental of Monthly giving

Posted by on Jan 9, 2017 in Recurring giving, Speaking |

This post was written for Charity How To  and can be read here  I’m so excited… Because monthly giving is becoming more and more popular! Systems keep getting easier and easier.  More organizations have seen the ‘monthly donor light!’ But yet, so many organizations are slow to come on board.  With just a little bit of training, you too can start your monthly donor program and grow that sustainable revenue you need to...

Read More

Create a Tax Letter for your monthly donors

Posted by on Jan 3, 2017 in Recurring giving |

This post was first written for and published by Donor Perfect and can be viewed here.  Happy new year! I hope you did fantastic and exceeded your year-end goals! Now it’s back to reality.  You’ve processed all of your donations for 2016.  You’re current with your thank you letters.  That should suffice, right? Then a monthly donor calls and wants a tax-receipt for all of her donations for the year, even though she gets her...

Read More

The Monthly-Donor-After-Ask…

Posted by on Nov 8, 2016 in Case Studies, Recurring giving, Uncategorized |

One of the neat things about the internet is that it’s really made asking for monthly donations so much easier. Especially after they’ve just done something else. There are so many success stories. Where to begin? Let’s start with your auto-responder. Say, you’re an advocacy organization and you do ask people to sign your petition. Did you know that you can use the auto-responder after they signed the petition not only...

Read More

Who is steering your monthly giving ship?

Posted by on Oct 31, 2016 in Case Studies, Recurring giving |

This blog post was also published in Direct Marketing Advents, the publication of the Direct Marketing Association of Washington, DMAW. If you’ve seen or heard me present about monthly giving before, you know that I always recommend the following first step of running a monthly giving program: Put one person in charge! (Note, If you’re a large organization, the above guideline could be expanded to: put ONE department in charge, but it will make...

Read More

Why Segmenting Your Sustaining Donors Is Crucial for Growth

Posted by on Oct 17, 2016 in Annual appeals, Recurring giving |

This post was written for and published by Bloomerang  More and more organizations now have a sustaining donor (monthly, quarterly, etc. donor) program. That’s great! Unfortunately, there can be a tendency not to continue appealing to them. But should you continue asking them for money? Can you send an appeal to your recurring donors? The answer is a resounding: YES, YES, YES! If you don’t, you’re missing out. The typical small shop that I have...

Read More

Monthly donors, your ‘insurance policy’ during disasters

Posted by on Oct 10, 2016 in Annual appeals, Recurring giving |

As part of the country is cleaning up after Hurricane Matthew and others are bracing themselves for it, I was thinking about disasters and the tremendous impact on fundraising, especially in prime giving season. For example, if you’re local, based in Florida, Georgia or South Carolina and your donors have to evacuate in the middle of your busy appeal season, that will definitely have an impact! Just think back what happened with Katrina...

Read More

Are you ready for #MonthlyDonorMonday ?

Posted by on Oct 3, 2016 in Recurring giving |

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, thank you! You’ve probably heard me ‘preach’ about monthly donors and how it’s still astounding that so many people are catching on really slowly on the tremendous value of monthly donors. Unfortunately, there’s not that much research (yet), because most monthly donors are reported in the annual appeal revenue and not always segmented out or tracked separately. The...

Read More

Monthly giving Pop-ups and Do-nots

Posted by on Sep 21, 2016 in Case Studies, Recurring giving |

This blog was written for and published by Pamela Grow at Simple Development Systems  Thank you, Pamela for being a great colleague. She introduced me to the webinar phenomenon and I’ve not looked back since! So, when she sends me a question, it’s a great opportunity to give back. So, one of her clients recently asked her about Monthly giving pop-ups and how they work (or do not work) and what the negative or positive impact could...

Read More

The 7 fundamentals of monthly giving…

Posted by on Sep 14, 2016 in Recurring giving, Speaking |

This post was written for and published by Charity How To  A few years ago, Monthly giving was something for the few and big organizations. Not anymore! Every organization can and should organize a monthly giving program in very short order. With the right tools (and you may very well already have them in-house), you can get started in no time. You may know I’m somewhat of a monthly donor ‘groupie!’ I’ve been managing...

Read More

Interview with Mazarine Treyz for Nonprofit Leadership Summit

Posted by on Sep 6, 2016 in Recurring giving, Speaking |

This was also published as part of an interview for the Nonprofit Leadership Summit.  MT: Hey, everybody. Welcome. This is Mazarine Treyz of Wild Woman Fundraising and I am so pleased today to be interviewing Erica Waasdorp, who wrote Monthly Giving: The Sleeping Giant, and who is also the president of A Direct Solution. She will be teaching at our Nonprofit Leadership Summit. Erica, can you give some people an idea of the kind of monthly...

Read More

Monthly giving has never been easier!

Posted by on Aug 31, 2016 in Recurring giving, Uncategorized |

This post was written for and published by Donor Perfect  Just a few years ago, setting up a monthly donor program was difficult. You had to do lots of workarounds, hire professionals to set it up.  or outsource the process and then spend money on direct mail or telemarketing to start asking donors to join your monthly donor program. It was expensive and labor intensive. Email campaigns were for the ‘big few’. Everything took a lot of time....

Read More

How to create a monthly giving appeal

Posted by on Aug 24, 2016 in Recurring giving |

This post was written for and published on the Donor Perfect blog  1. Ask often. Just like anything in fundraising, ask and you’ll receive! It’s crucial that you start asking for monthly donations as often as you can. 2. Set sail with email. Email is a great channel to use as you begin asking. It’s affordable, and donors can easily click right through to your recurring donation page. read...

Read More

Monthly Giving, Driver of Sustainable Fundraising Par Excellence!

Posted by on Aug 16, 2016 in Recurring giving |

This post was written for and published at the Eight Principles. Monthly giving is probably one of the least understood methods of sustainable giving in the US, but yet one of the most powerful ones.  Once you start, you’ll experience the power, but it’s the starting that’s often the most difficult. Today, I’d like to address the first 3 of The Eight Principles for Sustainable Fundraising™ as they all relate to monthly giving as a major driver...

Read More

What would you do If you could do it all over again?

Posted by on Jul 12, 2016 in Recurring giving |

Recently, my Agitator colleagues asked, what would you do if you could do it all over again? Here is what I’d say to you: If you could do it all over again, you should focus on building your monthly donor pool right away. It will help provide that sustainable revenue and it is easy and convenient for the donor. No gift is too small! If you look at the numbers, you scratch your head and wonder why not more organizations have jumped on the...

Read More

How can workplace and monthly donors play nice?

Posted by on Jul 6, 2016 in Recurring giving |

At a recent webinar, two people asked me the question: How do I integrate monthly giving with my workplace giving campaign: those individuals who have designated us and we receive a small amount through their pay check every pay period. My answer is: If you’d like, you can recognize them as monthly donors and tell the donors this either upfront before they decide to support you through their pay check or you can tell them afterwards. BUT,...

Read More

Monthly Donor Program is Back on Track

Posted by on Jun 21, 2016 in Case Studies, Recurring giving |

In the past year, this organization in Washington, DC had steadily started losing 500 monthly donors each month. At the same time, its acquisition efforts were only generating 250 monthly donors a month, so the program was in a steady and rapid decline. Something had to happen! The Director brought in A Direct Solution to review the program and try to turn it around. And that’s exactly what we did! One big problem in the past year was beyond...

Read More

Youth Organization Almost Doubles Its Monthly Donor Goal With One Email Appeal

Posted by on Jun 16, 2016 in Case Studies, Recurring giving |

This youth organization in Colorado reached out to A Direct Solution to ask for help with its first email appeal asking its donors to join their newly developed recurring donor program. Our first recommendation was to develop a special targeted page so we could link the email directly to this page. Our second recommendation was to find a donor to provide a challenge gift.The organization found a generous donor who was willing to put up a $5,000...

Read More

Monthly (Recurring) Gifts are the future, here and now!

Posted by on Jun 7, 2016 in Recurring giving |

You’ve heard me talking about monthly recurring gift programs and their importance on the long-term retention of your donors. Not to mention how much money you’ll raise! Fundraisers are often blown by away if I mention some numbers, just 300 monthly donors can bring in almost $100,000 a year for your organization. What’s not to like about that? So, if you are not already looking at implementing a program for your organization,...

Read More

How does Monthly Giving Jive with a Membership program?

Posted by on May 31, 2016 in Recurring giving |

How does Monthly Giving Jive with a membership program? Great question. It jives really well, but if you’d like to grow your number of monthly donors, you’ll have to ‘think’ a little bit differently about memberships. Basically what you’ll start allowing your members pay for their membership on a monthly basis. Key with this is that you recognize the member as a monthly donor and as a member at the same time, so...

Read More