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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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,...

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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...

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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...

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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....

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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....

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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....

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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...

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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...

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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...

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How can Nana Murphy make you a better fundraising professional?

Posted by on May 3, 2016 in Annual appeals, Case Studies, Direct Mail |

This post was prepared as a guest blog for Michael Rosen.  How can Nana Murphy make you a better fundraising professional? This is a post based upon the session I attended at the recent AFP International conference in Boston. Thank you, Michael, for sharing this post with your audience. The session I attended was called: From Ireland with Love, presented by Denisa Casement, CFRE, Head of Fundraising, Merchants Quay Ireland, Dublin,  Lisa...

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Monthly giving via EFT … EF what?

Posted by on Jul 21, 2015 in Recurring giving |

If you’re starting to get involved with your monthly giving program, you will come across some of these terms: EFT, ACH, Automatic Bank Withdrawal, Direct Debit. They all stand for the same thing: EFT is Electronic Funds Transfer, ACH is for Automated Clearing House. Automatic Bank Withdrawal is probably the best lay term to use and EFT the acronym. The donor provides you with their bank account information and authorizes you, the...

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What metrics will convince your board to start a monthly giving program?

Posted by on Jun 29, 2015 in Case Studies, Recurring giving |

This post appeared as a guest post for DonorPerfect What metrics will convince your board to start a monthly giving program? If you’re like a lot of organizations, boards (and sometimes other bosses) drag their feet on starting a monthly giving program. They worry that the metrics are not compelling enough to warrant investing the time, money and people. After all, monthly donors are just small donors, right? Yes, but here’s the great news: the...

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5 Reasons why it’s Crucial to Start Monthly Giving

Posted by on Jun 10, 2015 in Recurring giving |

  Guest blog written for DonorPerfect You must absolutely start a monthly giving program. There, I’ve said it. And you’ll hear me say it time and time again.But why is this so important? I’ll tell you why! In the US, historically, organizations have focused on major donors.That’s where most of their resources went. 20% of their donors gave 80% of their gifts. But how about the many small donors in the donor base? Until a few years ago,...

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