Don’t Forget to Test Before You Send

Posted by on Dec 11, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We had a great time with my family, the turkey and all the trimmings. On Black Friday, I sat down behind my computer and made donations to some 20 organizations. The same amount for each. Some I already donate to monthly, and some I only give to this time of year. To process the 20 donations, four used PayPal, and two used Stripe, NetCommunity, Donor Perfect Weblink, Classy or Network for Good. Then...

Read More

What Would St. Nick Say?

Posted by on Dec 10, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

St. Nick (or Sinterklaas as we called him) was part of my tradition growing up in Holland. Dec. 5 was when we received our gifts as kids. The night before, we’d put our shoe with some straw and carrots for St. Nick’s white horse in the corner of our living room. And he and his little helper black Pete would come and drop our gifts near our shoes. Here are two links to the explanation of this tradition. here or here. As we got older, we’d draw...

Read More

Nothing Is Impossible If You Just Believe

Posted by on Dec 2, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

  Every year, the military base theater near us (Joint Base Cape Cod) organizes the annual Christmas tree lighting. It’s a fun event, with hot cocoa, peppermint sticks and a short visit of Santa, of course! As a military spouse myself (married to a 32-year Airforce veteran), we love our little theater, and this event is always a lot of fun. It’s so wonderful to see the little kids and adults enjoy themselves. The tree lighting is followed...

Read More

It’s Not Too Late: Get Ready for Monthly Donor Month

Posted by on Dec 1, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving, Uncategorized |

There’s never a bad time to convert your constituents to give monthly, but there are two months a year that typically fit better in your overall communication plan: January and September. Now’s a good time to look at what you could be doing to make your donors stay longer and become more loyal. If you’ve always wanted to try taking over the home page for monthly giving for a month, September is a good month for it. If you’ve been following my...

Read More

Warning: Minimal Stress Involved

Posted by on Nov 26, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Yes, it’s true! Prime giving season is here. Everybody is on high alert. Printers are buzzing. Letter shops are stuffing appeals in overtime. Email drafts for #GivingTuesday and December are flying left and right. You’re pushing board members to commit to calling at least a few donors to say “thank you.” Some have said they’d be willing to come in and write personal notes on some of your appeal letters. And it all has to drop by Thanksgiving!...

Read More

It’s Time to Call Your Organization

Posted by on Nov 6, 2017 in Case Studies, NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

P I just came back from the International Fundraising Congress, which was held last week in Noordwijkerhout, Netherlands. It’s always a great time to visit my family who live near the German and Belgian border in the south. I was able to attend a great session on donor love with Jen Love of Agents of Good and Simon Scriver. I’d heard of them, but now I actually got to meet them—pretty neat! The session includes lots of great tips and examples...

Read More

What’s Your Techie’s Answer When It Comes to Monthly Donors?

Posted by on Oct 31, 2017 in Case Studies, NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

F I typically write posts that are aimed at any-sized organization. Today’s piece is initially more aimed at large organizations. Let me share this story with you. When I worked at a big animal welfare organization with a huge donor base, we had several wonderful people in our “systems support/technology/IT” department. As manager of monthly giving, I had to have regular meetings with these great “techies.” (Note: I absolutely mean this in the...

Read More

Why Don’t You Start Asking Monthly Donors for Bequests?

Posted by on Oct 29, 2017 in Case Studies, Legacies and Bequests, NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

I’m touching down in Amsterdam to attend the International Fundraising Congress in Noordwijkerhout, Netherlands. One of this year’s speakers is Richard Radcliffe. He’s not only a funny, energetic and entertaining presenter, but he’s also one of the most admired experts when it comes to legacy fundraising. In the U.K., because of the way wills are recorded, they’re able to do a ton of legacy fundraising research. When I asked him how monthly...

Read More

What Really Motivates Donors to Give Monthly?

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

I’m so excited! I just received “The 2017 Burk Donor Survey Report,” and this year’s study has a huge section on sustainers—comparing this year’s donors’ answers to ones from 2012, when they last had this major focus on monthly gifts. The top reason why donors want to give monthly is because it assures nonprofits of stable funds, immediately followed by: “More convenient for me,” “It reduces cost of fundraising,” “It’s a way to budget my...

Read More

Using Other Sustainers to Invite New Monthly Donors

Posted by on Oct 14, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving, Uncategorized |

  We know that video gives a major boost to open and click-through rates online. So, why not use it to your advantage and invite other donors to join your monthly donor program? Look at your current monthly donors—even if you have just five of them. Call them up, and ask them if they’re willing to share why they’re giving monthly. Then ask them if they’d be willing to say this on video. You don’t have to have a huge budget to make a video...

Read More

Can Transactional Donors Become Monthly Donors?

Posted by on Sep 25, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Uncategorized |

Originally posted in NonProfitPro Today on September 5, 2017 First of all, let me add my thoughts and prayers to those who lost their home and everything else after Hurricane Harvey. And I know we’re not out of the woods yet, with other storms coming near. Fortunately, there are many wonderful experienced organizations on the ground to help the victims. And, of course, fundraising activities have ramped up. People are literally walking in the...

Read More

Let’s Say ‘No’ to Automatic Sustainer Upgrades

Posted by on Aug 24, 2017 in Case Studies, NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Previously posted by NonProfitPRO Today on August 14 At the recent Bridge Conference, I enjoyed several wonderful sustainer sessions. During one of those, someone asked about the automatic sustainer upgrade process some nonprofits are apparently using. My hair immediately started standing up straight! What happened to being donor-centric? Automatic sustainer upgrades are really all about the nonprofit, but frankly, if you’re offering this,...

Read More

Have No Fear! Monthly Giving Help Is Near

Posted by on Aug 24, 2017 in Case Studies, NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Originally posted by NonProfitPRO today on August 21, 2017 Over the past few months, I hope I showed you how monthly giving has become so much easier for nonprofits to organize and then actually start. That’s because so many payment processors and donor bases now have built-in tools to create giving pages, add the recurring/monthly option and capture new monthly donors without a lot of jumping through hoops. Having said this, if you’re still...

Read More

What to Do If Your Monthly Donor Doesn’t Want to Give Online

Posted by on Aug 12, 2017 in Case Studies, NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

First posted by NonProfitPRO Today on July 31 While online giving is growing, it’s our assumption that donors are comfortable filling out their personal information into an online donation form and hitting the submit button. Then, where does that information go? For donors, that can be unnerving. They’re worried that their credit card information can get stolen. After all, the credit card abuse, even with chip, is still rampant. The first thing...

Read More

It’s Prime Hurricane Month: Monthly Donors to the Rescue!

Posted by on Aug 10, 2017 in Case Studies, NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

First appeared on NonProfitPRO Today on August 7, 2017 My first experience with a hurricane came in August of 1991, when “Bob” hit Cape Cod. I was actually still in the Netherlands, but I watched video of my then future in-laws wade through chest-high water near their beach house. Power was out for many days. Life came to a screeching halt. Other hurricanes followed later:  Andrew, Katrina, Sandy just to name a few. As a Red Cross PR volunteer,...

Read More

When Is Not a Good Time to Upgrade a Monthly Donor?

Posted by on Aug 1, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Originally posted by NonProfitPRO Today on July 24, 2017 I’ve been a monthly donor for many years. Two years ago, I did a little experiment: I joined 20 organizations to see what they would do (10 small and 10 large organizations). I wanted to experience their “thank you” process, their subsequent communication stream, tax letters, emails, lapsed recapture (if any) and upgrade process. One of those organizations is a huge national organization....

Read More

How Can You Create a Memorable Monthly Donor Journey?

Posted by on Jul 8, 2017 in Recurring giving |

Originally posted on The Eight Principles Last year, I attended a workshop at the International Fundraising Congress in Noordwijkerhout, the Netherlands, about creating memorable donor journeys. I really enjoyed the session and I was looking forward to implementing it with some of my clients, especially focused on monthly donors. So, over the past two months, I worked with a client mapping out their monthly donor journey. This religious...

Read More

6 Recommendations for Monthly Donor Prospects

Posted by on Jul 8, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Originally posted on NonProfit Pro Today, June 5, 2017 Hint: They’re typically already in your donor base. The best monthly donor prospects are donors who currently give you gifts of $100 or less. They are not your big check writers; if they did send you a $100 check, it was probably a stretch gift for them. Instead, monthly donor prospects are donors who can make small gifts more often. They are often on a fixed income. So, here’s what I...

Read More

Future Fundraising Now: How to recruit an army of monthly donors

Posted by on Jul 8, 2017 in Recurring giving |

Posted 12 Jun 2017 by Future Fundraising Now If you want to raise a lot more money for your organizations, there are three things you should focus on: 1.      Major donors 2.     Planned giving 3.      Monthly giving Let’s look at #3. It’s probably the biggest deal, and here’s a great post from A Direct Solution with hints from a nonprofit that has converted about 30% of its donors to monthly giving: When Is the Best Time to...

Read More

Monthly Giving: 4 Ways to Improve Donor Retention and Recruit Sustainers

Posted by on Jul 8, 2017 in Recurring giving |

Posted on June 15, 2017 by ngEngage In the second installment of the Blackbaud Institute’s Sustainers in Focus series—research-backed best practices for marketing, promoting, soliciting, and fulfilling a sustained giving program—Best Practice # 1 was to ask new donors to give on a monthly basis. Monthly giving almost sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it? Why on earth would a donor who has no relationship with you yet trust your organization...

Read More

Should You Invest in Account Updater for Monthly Donors?

Posted by on Jul 8, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Originally posted on NonProfitPro Today, June 26, 2017 Last week, I wrote about those “pesky” monthly credit card donors whose card expired or changes all the time. The good news is that there is a solution that you can implement for very little money. It works in the back-end and is able to find updated information for some 15 to 25 percent of your cards. That’s 15 to 25 percent of donors you do not have to contact–the...

Read More

Crowdfunding Monthly Donors: Don’t Get Them ‘Lost in Space’

Posted by on Jul 8, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Originally posted on NonprofitPro Today, July 3, 2017 My husband introduced me to the series, “Lost in Space” many years ago. Growing up in Holland, I had never heard of it, but it’s a wonderful show. (This was before Star Trek, of course.) So, why am I bringing up this series? Because it’s what I think about monthly donors and crowdfunding. Yes, there’s a place for it. It works for many groups and organizations....

Read More

How to Best Market Monthly Programs to Donors

Posted by on Jun 30, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

First published on NonProfit Pro Today on June 12, 2017 I just came back from presenting a workshop on monthly donors to a group of nonprofits in Michigan. One of the questions asked was the one on how to best market monthly donor programs to existing donors, especially for small organizations with limited funds and limited time. If you asked me this question four years ago, I would have answered, “Yikes! That’s a tough proposition.” But now,...

Read More

What Can You Do If Your Monthly Donors’ Payments Are Not Coming In?

Posted by on Jun 28, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving, Uncategorized |

Originally posted on NonProfitPRO Today, June 19, 2017 Two weeks ago, I was checking my credit card statement and noticed several iTunes charges on it. The charges were going up in value. Believe it or not, I don’t have an iTunes account, so that was an immediate flag. I called the credit card company right away to dispute the charges. They, of course, canceled my card and sent me a new card. I’ve used this card for multiple monthly...

Read More

How many monthly donors can you expect?

Posted by on Jun 4, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

This was first published on Nonprofit Pro How many monthly donors can you expect? That was one of the questions someone asked of me after a recent webinar. That is the $64 million question, isn’t it? The answer may surprise you, because it differs by organization size and organization’s motivation to grow its monthly donors. For example, I was speaking with a group the other day, and they have less than 300 donors to work with. They set a goal...

Read More

When Is the Best Time to Ask for a Monthly Gift?

Posted by on Jun 1, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Originally posted NonProfit Pro Today When fundraisers ask me this, the answer is: no better time like the present! And, you should be asking all the time! The more you ask, the more monthly donors you’ll generate. Here are just a few things one organization does that really has helped them grow their program. (They already have some 30 percent of their donors give monthly.) • Every September, they take over the homepage with a direct link to...

Read More

When Should You Give Up on a Lapsed Monthly Donor?

Posted by on May 30, 2017 in Recurring giving |

 posted April 27, 2017 NonProfit PRO Today And the answer is: NOT ANYTIME SOON! A year or so ago, I joined 20 organizations with a monthly gift. And (sneaky me), I gave them a card that was going to expire a month later. I then tracked what organizations did in terms of “thank you” letters and actions to try to get me back. In the next two months, only two organizations picked up the phone and called me! The rest sent me emails and left it at...

Read More

Top 3 Monthly Donor Retention Tips

Posted by on May 30, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

originally posted on NonProfit Pro Today By now, you know the tremendous power  monthly donors have. You know how it can help improve your donor retention to much higher levels. We typically see monthly donor retention rates between 87 percent and 95 percent—that’s double that of one-time donors. So, as monthly donors are starting to take hold in nonprofits, it’s important to put a few things in place to keep those donors giving monthly to your...

Read More

NonProfit Pro #Trending Now: Episode 1

Posted by on May 26, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Originally posted on NonProfit Pro Today  #TrendingNow In this new weekly video, Nhu Te breaks down the most popular articles of the week. This week is all about when a monthly donor calls to cancel from Erica Waasdorp, exercises in monthly giving from Blackbaud’s Ashley Thompson and DonorDrive’s webinar on Google AdWords. Check them...

Read More

Is an Auto-Responder Message Enough Recognition for a New Monthly Donor?

Posted by on May 26, 2017 in NonProfit Pro Today, Recurring giving |

Originally posted in NonProfit Pro  What’s the monthly donor experience when he or she fills in the online donation form and clicks the button to submit? In virtually all online donation platforms, it’s a two-step process. The minute the donor hits submit, he or she gets an auto-responder message, confirming that wonderful monthly gift. Then, secondly, an email is sent to the monthly donor confirming that gift again. In many online donation...

Read More