Why Donors Stop Giving

I’m writing to simply highlight and urge you to read an excellent blog post (and video) by Coleen Dilenschneider in which she reports on the “IMPACTS and the National Awareness, Attitudes, and Usage Study” that focuses on why cultural donors stop giving. This particular study looked at donors who gave between $250 and $2,500 annual and then stopped.

Spoiler alert: the primary reason why donors did not contribute again is that they were not being acknowledged or thanked for their gift by the organization they gave to. Really.

I don’t know about you, but I thank the person who makes my coffee at Starbucks. How is it possible that any organization does not thank its donors?

Well, one reason could be that your technology is failing you. Today, any donation made online should come with an instant acknowledgment, and then further communications can be scheduled later. Our PatronManager customers can set up an alert so that when any donation of say, over $1,000 comes in, the director of development gets an email and a task assigned to them to call that donor.

I suspect that what’s going on is that every organization wants to do the thanking. It’s just that organizing it and making it happen is extremely time consuming and/or nearly impossible to manage with current technology.

If you’re in that situation, have you considered the cost (ie: lost donations) to your organization each year for not properly thanking your donors?  

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