3 Digital Strategies to Elevate Recurring Gifts

11 DEC 2020
3 Digital Strategies to Elevate Recurring Gifts

As we enter the season of giving, Non-Profits eagerly await the recurring gifts of their established donor bases. It happens by having the right digital strategy and the right donor management software in hand, to facilitate recurring giving.

But 2020 has been a tough year for a lot of people, and those who would ordinarily donate may be unable to contribute the same amount of funds to their Non-Profits of choice.

How can Non-Profits encourage recurring giving in the face of this challenge?

1. 1. Create Donation Forms with “Recurring Gifts” as the Default Setting

Did you know that 70% of donors never return to make a second gift?

It’s a startling statistic and one that necessitates a process for prompting your one-time donors to become recurring gift-givers.

A small, monthly recurring gift is an easy entry point for donors, which is why many successful Non-Profits prompt donors to provide a recurring gift that costs “less than the price of a cup of coffee, each day.”

After all, these Non-Profits know that recurring gifts of 10 dollars, per month, are much easier to budget for than a one-time gift of 120 dollars.

So, when you use your donor management software to distribute online donation forms, ensure that you make “recurring gifts” the default setting for all donation forms. You can provide an option for those who wish to give larger, one-time monetary donations, but if you encourage monthly givings, you are more likely to get them and to see donations rolling in, year after year.

2. Segment Recurring Donors and Send “Thank You” Messages!

Very likely, your Non-Profit already sees 30% of its donors providing recurring gifts. As you encourage further recurrence, be sure to segment your recurring donors and send them “thank you” messages within 24 hours of receiving their gift. Depending on your donor management software, this process can easily be automated.

A thoughtful message is a no-fuss method of ensuring that your donors feel both appreciated and also inspired to continue giving to your organization.

But, with good donor management software, segmentation can go even further.

Some donors, as you’ve probably noticed, don’t want to receive an acknowledgment every month. And they tend to be vocal about that. So, don’t spam your donors — listen to them!

Listening and responding to a donor’s wishes will make him or her feel heard and, therefore, more likely to give for longer!

Use your donor management software to further refine your donor base into those who wish to receive “thank-yous” and those who don’t. This may sound small, but remember, it’s your donors who allow you to continue with your mission. Be responsive to their needs and wishes, and they’ll return the favour in kind.

3. Create Automatic Card Expiration Reminders

How many times have you signed up for a service online, registered your credit card number, and then promptly written the “expiration date” down on your calendar?

Would “never” be a fair assumption?

Well, you can be certain that your recurrent gift-givers will not remember to update credit card information, as the expiration date approaches. So, you’ll need to automate this process through your donor management software.

Configure settings such that a reminder email is sent, to your donors, at least a month before their card actually expires. Create and automate the distribution of a reminder e-mail one week before the card expires, one-day before the card expires, and finally one week after the card expires.

Very often, generous donors plan to continue giving but get busy and forget to update their payment information. Make this step easy for them — and don’t worry about sending too many reminders.

At the end of the day, successful Non-Profits remain "front of mind” by engaging their donors with frequent updates about the organization’s charitable accomplishments and with reminders that prompt donors to take action, when action is needed.