You can’t grow as a nonprofit if your donor database is stagnant or declining. According to Bloomerang, the cost of continually getting new donors can be 50 to 100 percent more than the amount you collect from them. As a matter of fact, with limited donors it can take years to break even.
This is why it’s important to ensure consistent growth of your donor database. This can be achieved by retaining existing donors and adding new ones. Not only will it help you save money in the long run, but also aid in the sustainability of your nonprofit.
The 2018 Fundraising Effectiveness Project report indicated that donor retention is at 45.5% and donor attrition (the rate at which an organization loses donors) at 55%. A higher retention rate means people believe in your cause and that you have a good onboarding strategy that makes people commit to your organization.
In this article, we will look at six strategies that can help you improve your donor retention rate and grow your donor database.
Strategies to grow your existing donor database
1. Plan engaging online fundraisers with raffles and sweepstakes
A sustainable fundraising strategy requires that you have diverse revenue sources. And one of the most effective methods for getting revenue while also engaging donors is through online charitable games such as 50/50 raffles and Catch the Ace.
- 50/50 Raffles: This is a raffle conducted online where the pot, made up of 50% of ticket sales, is given to the winner of the draw. The remaining 50% goes to the nonprofit organization. As more tickets are sold, the pot grows larger, which can attract even more donors. Most nonprofits who run 50/50 raffles do them month after month.
- Catch the Ace: This is a weekly online raffle that can run for up to 52 weeks or until the Ace is discovered. Each week, a winning ticket receives a percentage of the week’s proceeds from ticket sales. At the same time, the winner gets to choose a card from a deck of playing cards for the progressive (cumulative) jackpot. If the card selected is not the Ace of Spades, that card is removed from the deck and the progressive prize portion of the ticket sales for that draw is rolled over into the progressive jackpot for the next scheduled draw. This means the progressive pot keeps growing until the Ace of Spades is caught. If the card is the Ace of Spades, the winner then also wins the progressive jackpot. 50 percent of all proceeds from ticket sales go to the nonprofit.
The best part with these games and why they have become so popular is that they are highly attractive. Donors get the chance to win huge sums of money while supporting a charitable cause.
As internet usage becomes widespread, online charity raffles are expected to soar in popularity. It's easy to get started and the financial commitment is usually minimal when compared to other types of fundraisers.