Industry Insights: You Need to Retain Your Donors to Succeed

2020 has been quite the year, and if COVID-19 has taught us one thing, it is that sustainability must be a primary focus for an organization that wants to survive and thrive.

Sustainability efforts do not need to be grandiose or complicated. If your organization is on the brink of collapse, don’t focus on Hail Mary passes – focus on what has worked in the past. One of the most impactful things you can do to promote sustainability in your organization is to implement measures to retain your existing donors.

It is much less expensive to keep a donor than it is to acquire a new one, and you can find the easiest, most-immediate impact by investing in retaining donors, rather than searching for new ones.

One of the simplest strategies to engage your donors is to say thank you – early and often. You need a plan to strategically engage your donors. Focusing on donor retention doesn’t just make it happen, so you need to plan strategically to ensure these details do not slip through the cracks and alienate your audience. It will pay off! In fact, retained donors tend to give more and are your key prospects for a major gifts\capital campaign.

Donor retention enables your organization to plan for the future.

Your donor retention rate and the average gift within your retained donors allows you to project income. (Click here to calculate your donor retention rate for free.) Track your donor retention rate every month and track it with rigor. Doing so enables your organization to project income based on the donors who have historically stayed with you and their average gift.

A consistent focus on retaining donors enables your organization to plan for the future, connect with an already-engaged audience, and promote sustainability through whatever 2021 may bring our way.

To learn more about donor retention, we recommend this article by Aly Sterling.