Get to Know Your Donors: Tips for Successful Donor Retention

By: Kimberly Leskovec


On what level do you really know your donors? Do you know why they joined your organization? Why they chose you over hundreds of other cause-related organizations? Why they decided to give in the first place?

“Donor Aspirations and You” explains that donor’s feelings and aspirations are a big part of your success as a non-profit organization. Donor emotions make them feel empowered and keep them motivated to help their community. People give to the cause. They give for themselves and to fulfill their own personal goals and desires.

Did you know?

41-50% of new donors don’t give again.

20-30% of donors drop every year.

As a non-profit organization you should consider these three steps to better your donor retention:

  1. Ask yourself: what do you know about your current donors?
  2. Conduct interviews to see what donors truly feel and aspire.
  3. Encourage donors to share their stories with the community.

How it can help:

Donor retention is low. Implementing personable and respectable practices can increase long-lasting relationships within your organization. For example, writing personal thank-yous shows donors that you genuinely appreciate their gifts. It is also important to create ties with the community. Honoring donors by sharing their individual stories might increase interest from new donors in the area.

Non-profit organizations depend upon the generous donations of their members, and showing these members the appreciation and respect they deserve can go a long way in sustaining long-term relationships.

About the blogger: Kimberly Leskovec is a junior studying Communication Studies at the University of Iowa. She is also pursuing a Certificate in Fundraising and Philanthropy and a minor in Human Relations. She is interested in improving her knowledge of fundraising as well as learning the necessary skills to be effective in the non-profit world. In her free time, she enjoys running, spending time with friends and family, watching movies, and hiking.


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