Boosting Donor Loyalty: Chicago Fundraising Lab Recap

Donor Acquisition and Retention

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Thanks so much to all of our clients who joined us at the Chicago Fundraising Lab on October 8th!

Attendees networked with other local nonprofits, enjoyed Rachel Muir’s presentation on Steal Smart: What Fundraisers Can Learn from Corporate Brands to Dramatically Boost Donor Loyalty, saw how other clients are using Qgiv’s features and driving success, and learned how to write a better appeal letter.

The purpose of the Fundraising Lab is to host events that give local organizations the opportunity to connect with each other and benefit from the expertise of industry pros. The events also give nonprofits the chance to talk with staff about all things Qgiv!

Steal Smart: What Fundraisers Can Learn from Corporate Brands to Dramatically Boost Donor Loyalty

Rachel Muir, CFRE, took us behind the scenes and shared how corporate brands are able to hold onto 94% of their customers. Here are some tips and tools to look at the donor experience from a fresh perspective and boost your donor retention.

  • Know your donor retention rate.
    • For first-time donors giving $250 or more, the retention rate is closer to 47%, while those giving under $100 are retained at a rate of only 18%.
  • Make sure to personalize!
    • “71% of donors feel more engaged when they receive content that’s personalized.”, Abila Donor Loyalty Study, 2016
  • Ask for feedback
    • Satisfaction is the number one driver for customer loyalty
    • Try using micro surveys to gather feedback
  • Try to think from the customers point of view

Qgiv Roadmap & Customer Showcase

Jennifer Mansfield, Qgiv’s Vice President of Customer Experience, showcased the Qgiv roadmap. This included not only recent features, enhancements, and new products but what we have planned for the coming months. She shared that feedback from your organizations are heavily weighed into this process, so keep sharing your feedback with the CX team!

How to Build a Better Appeal

Afton Lorenz, Customer Success Manager at Qgiv, went step by step on how to craft a better appeal letter, from what people look at first in the letter to how to catch people’s attention with the envelope!

  • How donors skim an appeal
    1. Pictures
    2. Salutation
    3. Johnson Box & Post Script
    4. Signature
    5. Body of the letter
  • Pictures
    • Choose powerful images
    • People are going to feel more connected to a picture of a person or animal looking happy and healthy than sad or sick
  • Salutation
    • Don’t “Dear Friend” your donors
    • Try to use a salutation that matches the person’s interest if you don’t have their name. For example, use something like “Dear Animal Justice Warrior.”
  • Johnson Box & Post Script
    • 79-90% of readers look here first!
    • Great place to make an ask
  • Signature
    • Use someone besides the CEO to sign, like a volunteer or board member. If it is the CEO’s signature, try to include a personal note.
    • Be creative with the signature! For example, if your appeal is for an animal shelter, have the signature be from an adoptable pet
  • Body of the Appeal
    • Make it easy to scan
    • Make sure that it’s donor-centered. It should contain more “You” language than org-centered language.
    • Read the letter out loud! This is a good way to ensure it flows and makes sense.
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