Posted by Jay Wilkinson

In one of my last posts, I listed eight reasons why donors attrition, based on some research we’ve done in the area of donor retention. This is such a huge issue for nonprofits—did you know that, according to the 2012 Fundraising Effectiveness Survey by Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), 59% of donors attrition each year?

This means that six out of ten donors who gave money to an organization the previous year did not donate again the following year. Here are some of their top reasons:

  1.  They’re no longer able to afford the support.
  2. They have no memory of ever supporting an organization.
  3. They were asked for inappropriate amounts (too much or too little).
  4. They felt that other causes are more deserving.
  5. They heard or read something that rubbed them the wrong way.
  6. They weren’t asked to give again. (This is a common reason.)
  7. They weren’t informed how their gift was used.
  8. They felt a lack of connection with an organization.

So, we know a little about why donors leave. Now we need to figure out how to build a donor retention plan that keeps us in touch with these donors so that we can follow up with them. What kind of donor management tool do we need that will help us understand how to stay on top of this? First, it should be very focused on donor retention and helping us keep the donors we already have. The tool that I recommend has the following components.

At Firespring, the tool that we believe is easiest to use and has the most impact is one called Bloomerang, and we’re really excited about what it can do. In fact, we’re working with Bloomerang to make sure we integrate this tool into all the things we do at Firespring—we think it’s that great. This tool is basically a cloud-based donor management system designed to help nonprofits reach, engage and, most importantly, keep their donors. You can learn more about it here.