The mortgage or rent. Utility bills. Car loans and credit cards. Why then don’t we do the same with monthly charitable donations?
Making monthly donations has a number of advantages for the giver and the receiver.
Monthly charitable donations are less of a hit to the checkbook, but at year’s end these smaller bits can add up to more than the donor could normally give with a single gift. Donors often can afford to give more by giving less, more often.
Donors are no longer peppered with fundraising appeals from the organization. Instead, they get thank-yous and updates.
Instead of the donation extremes many nonprofits experience (huge peaks in December; dips in funding at other times of the year), regular, monthly gifts make it easier to budget and focus on doing the good works nonprofits do.
Operating costs are less because nonprofits don’t need to send fundraising appeals to those who are making regular, monthly gifts.
Donor retention naturally is improved because these donors are locked in for a period of time. Few who sign on for recurring donations abandon them.
If you want your donors to make monthly gifts, you have to tell them why it is a smart move and make it easy for them to do it.
At every opportunity and in as many ways as possible, market monthly gifts as an option. Add monthly donation buttons to your website. Include easy-to-complete forms on the web and in your direct mail. Ask a donor who has opted for monthly gifts to agree to tell their story in a newsletter, a brochure or an online video.
Show them how much their monthly gift will do. Break it down and give them hard and accurate numbers. UNICEF has a great slide show across its donation page that shows the impact that gifts of different size can have. $1 a day provides antimalarial treatment for 33 people. $2.50 a day or $75 a month immunizes 128 children against polio.
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