Creating A Remarkable Donor Experience

Donor-centered fundraising and the donor experience are the new buzzwords for improving donor relations and donor retention rates.  So what does donor-centered fundraising look like? 

Learn how other organizations are using a donor-centric approach to capture the minds, hearts, and donations of their donors!

Penelope Burke (Statistical Data from Donor-Centered Fundraising) defines donor-centered fundraising as follows:

"Donor-centered fundraising puts satisfying donors’ need for meaningful information at the top of the agenda, enhancing donor communication with intermittent recognition designed to reflect the unique aspects of the individual charity"

In the past, donors gave to a non-profit, and then to a specific project of a non-profit.  Now the emphasis is on the impact, rather than the project, or even the non-profit itself.  Donors want to be engaged with the organization and its mission, and especially want to know how their donations are making a difference.  

What does this mean for you, the fundraiser?  More than ever, you need to be able to measure and analyze what your donor experience looks like within your organization.  You need to know what your donors want/need, what’s currently working, where improvements can be made, and how you can engage staff.  Ultimately, to keep your donors satisfied, you need to deliver the experience that the donor wants. 

How can you improve your donors’ experience? 

1. Stories of impact

Not just after a donation is made, but on a regular basis.  These stories should come from all facets of your organization – physicians, nurses, maintenance staff, patients, as well as the development office.

2. Encourage internal leadership

Encourage internal leadership to engage with donors, and expand those donors’ relationships with your organization.

3. Invite your entire community

Invite your entire community to engage with your mission, and fostering an internal culture of philanthropy by sharing your story publicly and communicating your cause.

4. Remember and acknowledge milestones

Remember and acknowledge key milestones in a donor’s life in a personal way, rather than simply sending an impersonal card. 

5. Remember and respect donor preferences

Remember and respect donor preferences in which channel of communication they prefer, how they like to give their donations, how often they like to be contacted, and if they are interested in one specific area of your work.

6. Recognize your donors

Recognize your donors – both publicly, and personally, and say thank you often.  Honor the relationship rather than the gift itself.  This includes valuing loyal givers in addition to large givers.

effective Donor Recognition strategy

"Understanding your current donor experience allows you to improve your donor experience which leads to enhancing donor satisfaction, which results in improving donor retention and increasing revenue."

Contact us today and let us you create the ultimate donor experience to increase donations and enhance your culture of philanthropy.


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