4 Tips to Grow Your Monthly Giving Program

4 tips to grow your monthly giving program

Are you looking for a way to sustainably boost your fundraising results? Look no further and grow your monthly giving program! It will both create a reliable, long-term stream of revenue for your nonprofit and increase your donors’ potential.

Monthly giving programs allow donors to sign up once and automate donations on a regular schedule, typically by pledging a gift amount on a credit card or bank account each month. The seamless nature of recurring giving is growing in popularity — and in revenue! While results from one-time gifts decreased by 2% in 2018, monthly giving revenue increased by 17%[1]

Because monthly giving is a “set it and forget it” option, similar to online bill pay, monthly donors are significantly more loyal, with a retention rate as high as 80%, compared to 20% among regular donors[2]. Additionally, monthly giving is more affordable for budgets, allowing you to get value from donors who aren’t able to give larger one-time gifts, like millennials. That’s why, overall, monthly donors are 5 times more valuable than one-time donors[3]. Yes, 5 times! 

However, like any other fundraising initiatives, monthly giving programs require strategy to be profitable. Here are 4 essential tips to grow a successful monthly giving program:

#1 — Brand your monthly giving program

Make your monthly donors feel like they’re part of a special community. Name the group, create a logo and offer unique benefits such as branded premiums, invitations and gift matches. Develop a unique stream of communications for these donors, including a welcome package and newsletters with exclusive stories. Send them fewer appeals and more cultivations, always with custom language.

#2 — Promote your monthly giving program across all channels

Both your current donors and nondonors could be interested in your monthly giving program. Promote it everywhere to reach them all:

  • Through direct mail — mention the program in acknowledgment letters and new donor welcome kits
  • Through email — invite subscribers to join the program in an e-newsletter or by sending special campaigns
  • On your website, with lightboxes on the donation, home and most visited pages
  • On social media, with special ads or organic posts

#3 — Make it easy to become a monthly donor

Optimize your website so becoming a monthly donor is easy. Build a page dedicated to your program and create a section for monthly gifts on the donation form with preselected amounts, which tend to boost conversions by 35%[4]. In addition, choose a special contact person to make the program feel more personal, and send donors personalized welcome and thank-you notes. 

#4 — Thank, cultivate and upgrade monthly donors

Last, but not least, pamper your donors throughout their journey with your nonprofit to make sure they stay! Send uplifting welcome and personalized thank you messages, share exclusive stories of impact and suggest other ways they can get involved. Encourage upgrades 6 to 9 months after the first monthly gift, picking significant moments such as holidays and anniversaries. Automate reminders to launch before a donor’s credit card expires, and reach out to lapsed donors via email, mail and phone. 

Need more advice on how to start or grow your monthly giving program? Reach out to our team: info@faircomny.com

[1] M+R Benchmarks.”2019 Key Findings”, https://mrbenchmarks.com/numbers/fundraising.  
[2] Network for Good. “The Ultimate Recurring Giving Course”, https://www.networkforgood.com/lesson/why-recurring-giving-matters/.
[3] Dietrich, Carilu. “5 Giving Trends You Need to Know for 2019 and Beyond.”, Classy Blog, https://www.classy.org/blog/giving-trends-2019-and-beyond/.  
[4] Network for Good. “The Ultimate Recurring Giving Course”, https://www.networkforgood.com/lesson/why-recurring-giving-matters/.

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