I’m in the middle of a sneak peak of Tom Ahern’s latest book – and don’t worry Tom, I won’t give away the surprise of what it’s called.
In one section, Tom looks at the issue of donor fatigue. I’ve sat in meetings where the fundraiser has shared complaints from donors (or board members) that they are asked too often for money. Even the organization itself worries it asks far too much.
“Charities reasonably worry: Will we burn out our donors if we ask for gifts from them too often?“, Tom asks.
You can google it, but studies show that asking your loving donors twice a year will bring in more money than just asking once. Full stop.
However, donor fatigue is a real issue.
Donors get bored. That makes it sound like it’s their fault but actually, it’s yours.
Mailing your donor two times a year instead of once WILL raise you more money if you actually have something to ask for. If you are sending the same, charity centred appeal about your programs as last time, it WON’T raise you more money.
Your direct response program and schedule NEEDS to be organic and evolving based on the help you need from your donors.
Just say no to your agency that TELLS you that you HAVE to mail in September because THEIR schedule tells you to.
If you lack a compelling reason to ask your donors for help – don’t mail. If you keep that in mind, you never have to worry about fatiguing them.