If your nonprofit is going to thrive in the future, you need donors who will maximize their contributions and help you achieve your objectives. Unfortunately, getting these donors is often easier said than done. After all, attracting new supporters is tricky, and getting them to make large donations is even more challenging. Lots of nonprofits get stuck on this and fail to grow the way they want to. As it turns out, though, the trick might not be “getting” the donors. Instead, it might boil down to turning the stable, consistent donors you already have into the big donors you crave. Nurturing donors that are reliable and already affiliated with your cause could be your golden ticket.
A 5-Step Plan for Nurturing Donors into Larger Donations
Take your small, regular donors and make them into major contributors with these five professional tips:
1. Acknowledge Their Contributions so far
If you want to move into a new relationship with your donors, you’ve got to make it clear that you appreciate the relationship you currently have with your target audience.
To do this, you’ve got to thank them for their contributions so far. While the way you do this will depend on the mission and style of your nonprofit, things like mailers and email newsletters generally work very well.
In these communications, acknowledge the contributions your donor has made so far, and be sure to issue a heartfelt “thank you” for their support to date. This sets the stage for your next big ask.
2. Demonstrate Positive Outcomes From Their Most Recent Pledges
When donors contribute to a nonprofit, they want to know that their donations are making a difference. With this in mind, one of the best things you can do to enhance your fundraising attempts is to showcase the previous impact donations have made for your NPO.
There are dozens of ways to do this. The first and most obvious is to create a digital “success story” and distribute it to your donors. This could be a series of pictures of buildings you’ve constructed, aide you’ve delivered, or people you’ve helped, or a video that outlines what your NPO has achieved with the help of donor funds in the last year. You could also use a visual asset like a fundraising thermometer to show your supporters how far you’ve come.
No matter how you do it, showing your donors that their contributions do matter is one of the best ways to encourage them to boost their support.
3. Explain Your Needs
The next step in nurturing your donors compassionately is to explain why you need more money and what you’re going to do with it. Maybe you’re seeking additional donations because your vision has gotten bigger or because you’re launching a new product.
No matter what the case may be, explaining your new goals is an essential step on the road to achieving them. As you explain these things, be sure to provide details (remember to start with “why”), including your timeframe, specific vision, total funds needed, and anything else that is relevant to your campaign and can encourage donors to give larger sums.
4. Ask Directly for a Larger Donation
Tell these supporting donors that they’ve been integral in holding you up so far, but that they need to go one step further, now.
As you ask for larger donations, you can do it one of two ways: ask specifically for a larger dollar amount from each donor, or outline the total funds you need to raise.
The approach you take will depend on your mission and culture. No matter what you do, it’s essential to be direct and truthful and ensure you get right to the heart of the matter with your donors.
5. Don’t Push
Once you’ve made your case, it’s time to step back and leave it to your donors. Some will upgrade, some won’t, but you don’t want to push them away by demanding it. Be gracious and grateful, but leave them the space to consider it.
While some will see the additional donation as a no-brainer, others will need some time to consider their budgets and goals before they give to your cause again.
Nurturing Donors to Make Larger Donations
While it’s true that cultivating donors is a process, it’s a rewarding one that can have far-reaching impacts for your NPO when you do it right.
By following these steps and understanding the ins and outs of nurturing donors, you can take those small, consistent donors and make them into large, supporting donors in no time.
For other ideas about nurturing your donors, check out this article by our friends at CharityHowTo: How To Raise More By “Upgrading” Your Monthly Giving Donors
Looking for a professional team to help you enhance your nonprofit’s website? Contact Creative Science Labs today!