Modern philanthropy allows for many innovative charities to form, each geared toward serving different populations in need. One person with passion and compassion is all that’s necessary to start up a charity that could grow into a nationwide organization equipped to help thousands. One source of trouble is gaining and keeping donors so that you can ramp up to this scale. It’s often hard for charities to acquire donors, and people who presently partner with them aren’t always consistent about giving. Read on to discover several different ways to encourage people to donate more, ranging from connecting to people on a personal level to making the giving process easy.
First, you can up your giving by improving your marketing. Essentially, this involves focusing your messaging and striving to tell a unified, compelling, and facts-based story of your work and mission while encouraging people to join in the story themselves.
Communicate Your Organization’s Accomplishments Objectively
Many donors seeking objective data and concrete accomplishments want you to tell your story objectively. They want to build trust in an organization and seeing cliché, emotion-based appeals may prevent them from trusting you with their hard-earned resources. Paint potential donors a picture through the number of people served, data about outcomes after your intervention, and other objective measures. Don’t just look back—project into the future as well. Use past data to show how your programming can evolve in the future and set actionable and time-bound goals that donors can track. This prevents your operation from seeming nebulous and ties donor giving into your charity’s bright future.
Connect Donors to a Person
While objectively honing in on the scope of your entire work helps build trust, connecting donors to individuals they could help also encourages more giving. It does so by building the story of your work around specific people. After all, who cares about a story if it doesn’t give you access to a main character? Allow certain representatives to be the main characters for your organization’s work and, in doing so, allow more immediate and intimate connection through your charity. Donors are more likely to commit their resources to people they know of than to vague groups of people. As you engage potential donors, make sure they know that the items they donate or the money they contribute will help more people like this person get the help they need. Donors are less likely to quit giving if they have ties to a specific person. Also, to make this bond between donor and recipient more concrete, consider whether you can actually connect them—sometimes exchanging letters is appropriate and deepens the relationship.
Use the Right Words
Another factor to consider when encouraging people to give more narrows down to the individual words you use in your messaging and requests for giving. There are several words you can say and write to strengthen your appeals, including using donors’ names and the words “you” and “because.” Using donors’ names illustrates the presence of a relationship between an organization and a donor. It also draws the individual into the discussion, rather than leaving them as an anonymous outsider. Similarly, signing an email or letter with your own name completes this relationship.
Also, the word “you” is powerful. This word signals the tone of your message is more collaborative and conversational than corporate. Like using donor names, this also draws them personally in.
One last word that’s impactful is “because.” Its inclusion often transitions your message from a generic appeal without basis or vision to a discussion of how you previously accomplished or plan to fulfill a goal. “Because” is comforting because it contains honesty. From a donor’s perspective, what follows the word could either be well-founded evidence for continuing to pursue a cause or baseless and vague statements that expose a poorly-run charity’s ineptitude. Either way, it informs their decision.
Connect Your Cause to Current Events
Donors want assurance that the cause they partner with is relevant. There’s no better way to gain donors’ attention than by showing them how your caring work connects to a modern problem. For example, in a pandemic like the coronavirus outbreak, a debt counseling non-profit would do well to explain that their services are necessary to help those who have lost their jobs due to recent economic upheaval. There are many other related needs, as well as those relating to other crises, including the opioid crisis, gun violence crisis, and others. At the same time, if your charity does not really align with crisis-specific services, be sure to still emphasize your cause’s importance amidst other worldwide issues.
Get People to Volunteer
If people don’t trust or understand your work, the best way to earn their trust is by bringing them in for a close-up view of your work. Volunteering introduces potential donors to the very programs they could fund. This experience helps them form relationships with your staff, fully grasp your mission and passion, and see how you put your words into action each day.
Additionally, there are practical ways to up giving that involve the actual giving process and how human behavior works.
Simplify the Giving Process
For one, simplifying the giving process—its steps, your giving platforms, your giving options, and more—helps secure your charity more funds. Making sure you keep up a website with clear pages for online donations helps tremendously, especially as younger people turn to online giving. Also, ensure donors have a simple way to end their donations. Giving donors a simple way out allows them to retain their trust in your organization. If you fail to do so, you may scare people away from going through with donating.
Don’t Ask for Money Now
On this online platform or through other means, be sure to establish an automatic payment date in the future rather than having people pay now. People feel more positively about making decisions that lead to positive outcomes while minimizing costs. Delaying the cost of donating until a future date while thanking donors with a special note or small gift emphasizes the joy of giving while limiting the cost’s experience. This also gives people an easy out if they don’t want to go through with giving, which, counterintuitively, makes people more comfortable and may secure you more consistent givers.
If you would like to give, you can either give a monetary gift or research what items schools, shelters, and various groups need. 2Moda is a valuable partner to make these donations happen. For example, if you want to donate to a women’s shelter, 2Moda carries quality wholesale women’s bags and other helpful wholesale products.