How to Build Donor Loyalty

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

We are very excited to have donor research expert Adrian Sargeant join us for a brand new webinar this month on donor loyalty. Adrian will show you the latest research and findings from the world of donor retention and how you can apply it during a BRAND NEW WEBINAR you won’t want to miss: How to Build Donor Loyalty: Lessons from Testing and Research. Adrian knows why some donors stick around and others disappear.

11 Elements of Fierce Loyalty to Keep Your Donors

Wild Woman Fundraising

. Fierce Loyalty, by Sarah Robinson. It’s called Fierce Loyalty. This is how you build friendships, and relationships with your donors. How can you engage them, keep them coming back, and create loyal donor experiences for them? Chances are, your donors are online.

7 Principles Of Donor Loyalty

The Agitator

Super communicator Tom Ahern has completed his review of loyalty guru Adrian Sargeant’s 7 principles of donor loyalty. If you’re really serious about understanding — and improving — donor loyalty you must absorb Adrian’s book, Building Donor Loyalty: The Fundraiser’s Guide to Increasing Lifetime Value , written with Elaine Jay. communications direct marketing donor retention loyalty premium At last!

Ultimate Collection Of Loyalty Statistics

The Agitator

The authors — loyalty program marketers Access Development — report that they’ve recorded every publicly available piece of data they could find regarding customer engagement and loyalty and compiled it in the Ultimate Collection of Loyalty Statistics. Donor retention / loyalty / commitment premium

Loyalty … By Carole King

The Agitator

In one of the best songs ever written (IMHO), timeless Carole King worries about the enduring loyalty of her lover. The next time your team gathers to talk about donors, retention and loyalty, get in the mood … play Will you still love me tomorrow?

Astounding Donor Loyalty

The Agitator

article last week, Gail Meltzer of CoreStrategies for Nonprofits sent us an article she wrote describing her own experience as a lifelong under-cultivated donor. Here’s the story of a donor (Gail) whose loyalty I find truly remarkable, under the circumstances … She’s been giving to several groups continuously for thirty years, generally in the $25-$50 range, and generally unrestricted. Clearly, you are much too nice a donor.

Loyalty To AARP

The Agitator

Here — from loyalty360 (sort of a trade association for loyalty marketers) — is an update on AARP’s elaborate loyalty program , called ‘Rewards for Good’ In a nutshell, through this program AARP members earn. Donor retention / loyalty / commitment Innovation Integrated fundraising and marketing premium

Loyalty Inflection Points

The Agitator

Is organizational loyalty infectious? But I’m not talking in this post about ‘infectious’ … the word in the title is ‘inflection’ So, first, a definition from a fascinating white paper, Inflection Points: Seizing the Moments in Customer Loyalty , authored by loyalty marketing firm, Aimia: “The term ‘inflection point’ has multiple definitions. Don''t Miss these Posts donor retention loyalty premium

10 Ways to Build Loyalty Among Your Online Community Members

J Campbell Social Marketing

Instead of focusing on growing your social media numbers, how about focusing on building loyalty – retaining engaging the fans/followers that you do have? Here are 10 ways to build loyalty among your online community members through celebration and acknowledgement!

Acknowledging Donor Loyalty

The Agitator

I could easily spend a couple of hours each day reading articles (and books) on customer loyalty and loyalty programs in the commercial space. Recognizing individual donors when they reach certain tenure thresholds, as in … "Tom, we see that you’ve now been a member for two (three, five, whatever) years and we want to remind you of some of the accomplishments your contributions have made possible over that period."

6 big recommendations from Abila’s donor loyalty study about content.


Here are 6 big recommendations from Abila’s donor loyalty study: 1. Spend time on content and your content strategy: Donors are turned off by poor content, which may cause them to stop giving to your organization. Survey your donors: This is my favorite.

Taking Donor Loyalty Seriously

The Agitator

Earlier this month we noted a blog post by marketer Seth Godin on loyalty. Here’s some customer and donor loyalty experience from Agitator reader Andrew Kramer that I didn’t want to see under-appreciated in Comment limbo … “I recently switched electricity providers from an all wind provider with a great brand (one that made me loyal for a very long time mostly because I liked what the story they told me made me feel about my self) to a cheaper, dirtier provider.

To Be or Not To Be- Donor Loyalty

A Small Change

Is donor loyalty changing? When I look at Haiti as an example of the new kind of donor loyalty I’m not sure if I should be encouraged or discouraged. Does the decline in donor loyalty impact they way that we thank one-time annual fund donors? Should we invest less in cultivating repeat donor gifts? Is your organization experiencing a decline in donor loyalty? Do you have a hard time holding onto your monthly or regular donors?

Online Personalization Builds Loyalty

The Agitator

There, with, personalized online reporting of the charity’s results connects donors with the specific projects they initially joined to support. This approach cut attrition amongst face-to-face acquired donors in half. Different execution, but same underlying premise — bond your donors by allowing them to customize their online connection with your organization. Giving donors a bit of choice goes a long way.

Flat Earth Fundraising: Ice Cream Murder And Donor Loyalty

The Agitator

Looking for a shorthand way to understand how you can improve donor lifetime value by 130%? Then take a look at the infographic below – The Anatomy of a Committed Donor – prepared by our colleague Kevin Schulman over at DonorVoice.

Seth Godin On Loyalty

The Agitator

Some good observations from the marketing guru on loyalty. First, an interesting definition:&# Loyalty is what we call it when someone refuses a momentarily better option.&# Then some bad news: “Loyalty isn’t forever. Do you have ten stories from loyal donors in your files? Tags: Don't Miss these Posts Seth Godin communications donor retention loyalty

Dear Donor: You Suck

The Agitator

For this example, I’ll let Adrian Salmon ‘s first-hand report speak for all the real fundraisers who care about donors. Communications Donor Centricity Donor Centricity - Case Studies Donor retention / loyalty / commitment Major donors Online fundraising and marketing premium

How to keep your donors coming back every year

Wild Woman Fundraising

Your donors are waving goodbye to you. Our donors don’t give year after year. Donors staying loyal is the exception, not the rule. According to Chuck Longfield , ten years ago the average retention rates of a newly acquired donor were roughly 33%. Survey your donors.

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How To Measure Loyalty

The Agitator

In this mini-debate from DMNews, three approaches to measuring loyalty are advanced: 1. Referrals — the person who acts as your most enthusiastic evangelist, converting the most consumers (or donors) to your product/brand (or nonprofit). Thinking in fundraising terms, which of these do you think is the best measure of a donor’s loyalty? If you could identify the members of each group in your donor file, which group would you invest in the most?

Brainstorming Donor Identities

The Agitator

I’ve been preaching testing donor identities as ways of segmentation your file even in my pre-Agitator days. But here’s a secret: not all donor identities are created equal. Is there a difference in donors by what content they consume? Disaster versus non-disaster donors.

Are You Donor-Obsessed or Merely Donor-Centric?

The Agitator

” So, let’s kick ‘donor-centricity’ up a notch and focus on what makes for a “donor obsession” culture? The essential question: What are the characteristics of a donor obsession culture? Making decisions based on evidence of donor behavior and attitudes, not opinion or ego.

The State of Nonprofit Donor Retention (And What To Do About It)


As a general rule, retaining existing donors costs less than acquiring new ones. Current donors are a curated universe who have already demonstrated a belief in your organization’s mission, and willingness to take action toward it. Start with a donor stewardship program.

Online Loyalty Building

The Agitator

There’s probably no one out there who is not a "member" of some sort of loyalty program sponsored by a commercial merchant. I doubt anyone will dispute that the more your nonprofit engages your members/donors, the more loyal they are likely to be. Maybe not a birthday, but perhaps there’s some other anniversary date that might have relevance to your particular cause or charity and your donor’s engagement with it.

Donor Loyalty - New Agitator White Paper

The Agitator

The Agitator has released the fifth in its new series of DonorTrends White Papers, based on our proprietary donor survey research. This paper, dealing with donor loyalty, is available only as a benefit for subscribers to The Agitator’s Premium Service. Our new DonorTrends paper is titled Donor Loyalty: The Holy Grail of Fundraising. Is there such a thing as a loyal donor?

It Takes More Than Luck to Keep Your Donors

Ann Green

Donor retention rates continue to be poor, especially for first-time donors. Donors don’t keep magically donating to your organization and you can’t hope you’ll get lucky and they’ll donate again. You need more than luck to keep your donors. You need good donor relations.

Testing Your Donor Identities

The Agitator

Previously on donor identity: It’s good to segment by identity. Thus, you must collect them from your donors before you know if they are valuable. But let’s say you have a largely offline donor file – you won’t be able to test without incurring significant cost.

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What to Listen for in Donor Onboarding

The Agitator

More fundamentally, they change the economic engine from one of pure volume (make more, ask more with all its diminishing returns and inevitable slow/no growth trajectory) and guesswork on what to send, to one based on donor understanding.”. You have donors like this.

Understanding Donor Relationships

The Agitator

Tom and I’ve been focusing lots on the importance of ‘ donor-focused fundraising’ and essential ‘donor experiences’ In fact, we’ve invited Agitator readers to join us on February 17 th for a free webinar on fixing the donor experience.

Loyalty Lesson From The Who

The Agitator

New ads for Shure , the microphone maker, feature various artists — like Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey of The Who — professing their steadfast loyalty to the brand. " Do you have stories of commitment from your most loyal donors? Tags: fundraising loyalty Don't Miss these Posts donor retention

Can Your Monthly Donors Be Held Hostage?

The Agitator

Many organizations making this switch are discovering to their shock that either their old CRM or old payment processor—or both– are refusing to transfer their monthly donors’ credit card or other payment data to the new vendor.

Who Gets The Most Loyalty?

The Agitator

This week, a brand you’ve all heard of — and probably enjoyed — announced it was beginning its first ever loyalty program. " "Creating a loyalty program now is imperative to create a stronger relationship with [Brand's] highly-engaged customer base, especially given the current economic conditions. "Over Before I identify the brand, consider the following chart from Donor Loyalty: The Holy Grail of Fundraising , one of our DonorTrends white papers.

More Re Online Loyalty Building

The Agitator

Last week, The Agitator posted on online loyalty building and asked readers what they are trying along these lines. Gift reminder : If donor Jane sponsors a cat-dog-acre of rain forest for her nieces and nephews, send her a reminder next year and make it easy for her to repeat the gift. (I’d And somewhere in this sequence, why not test asking donor if they’d like to add more special dates, so your nonprofit can automatically send them a reminder?

Creating Great Donor Experiences

The Agitator

I especially note Tom Ahern’s channeling of Mark Phillips insight, “The only thing worth a damn is the donor experience.” Tom’s post Designing a Customer-Centric Organization triggered a number of valuable comments from readers.

Hanging Up On Your Donors

The Agitator

Breaking Out of the Status Quo Communications Donor retention / loyalty / commitment Fundraising philosophy/profession Nonprofit management Telemarketing premium

How Donors Choose Among Nonprofits: The Role of Identity

The Agitator

One of the points Kevin made yesterday is that organizations are differentiating themselves by creating donor journeys based on donor identity. The University of Kent (best known as where Superman’s adoptive parents studied) did a report called “ How Donor Choose Charities.”

Your Donor Went Missing!

The Agitator

You lost a donor today. In a large nonprofit, say 100,000 donors, you actually lost something like 123 donors today. In a really big organization, say 500,000 donors, you lost 615 donors … TODAY! Then finally someone does the calculation and discovers, Direct mail Donor retention / loyalty / commitment DonorTrends / DonorVoice Fundraising analytics / data premium

Donor Centricity — The Missing Ingredient

The Agitator

No matter how much you try, you really can’ t call yourself ‘donor centric’ unless you’re actively seeking donor feedback. Donor retention / loyalty / commitment Fundraising analytics / data premium

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Are You Quarantining Your Major Donors?

The Agitator

It’s as though exposure to direct mail or email will somehow infect their major donors and prospects. “You’ll never get milk from a cow by sending it a letter.”

Fixing The Donor Experience

The Agitator

I just noticed this — not unfamiliar — fundraiser’s lament from the trenches: “Our donors don’t appreciate us!” ” Phil McCorkle, writing a column in the Salem, Oregon Statesman Journal directed at any and all donors who might be reading (i.e.,

The Tragedy of the Donor Commons

The Agitator

How do we know this tragedy of the commons has arrived when it comes to donor acquisition through list rental and exchange? There are a few signposts: Our donors are reporting it. Cumulative exposure to nonprofit appeals erodes donors’ likelihood of donating.

Freeing Monthly Donor Hostages: Survey Results

The Agitator

In Can Your Monthly Donors Be Held Hostage? If you care about the retention of monthly your monthly donors you’ll want to read and share the results of this Survey. Where are monthly donor records and credit card information are stored and maintained?

Love Those Donor Complaints

The Agitator

In support of Roger’s and Mark’s messages, here’s something more prosaic regarding just one aspect of hanging on to donors … dealing with complaints. Donor retention / loyalty / commitment premiumYesterday Roger hamstered hammered away at retention, drawing upon Mark Phillips’ (Bluefrog) wonderful warm and fuzzy hamster parable.

Overcoming Donor Resistance

The Agitator

Yesterday I raised the question of why did it seem so difficult to get a second gift from a donor. New donor retention is only 17.6%. So we seem to have trouble getting over 80% of first time donors to our nonprofits to make a second gift … to stick around. But this post, How to help skeptical donors to give , by George Crankovic, guest writing on Future Fundraising Now, offers some additional suggestions that might help get your donors over the second gift hump.