One of the techniques I use as a fundraising professional is to ask potential donors what they like and dislike about the way charities conduct their appeals. My thinking is I can tailor my approach with particular donors if they tell what that approach should be. One of the responses I hear a lot is that donors find it a waste to be asked to donate multiple times in a year. Sometimes, they feel the charity I am representing at the time participates in what they see as over asking. When this happens, I usually explain that research has shown a charity’s best prospects are it’s current donors. I go on to explain that it has also been shown, in terms of the best returns, charities should approach their donors at least eight times a year regarding fundraising. Before, the donors have a chance to get upset (and before you leave me comments), I go on to explain that if donors feel they had been asked more than twice a year, the charity needs to do a better job. I say this because, as fundraisers, we need to have times we make specific asks, and other times we give donors opportunities to donate.
A donation opportunity is when we tell the donor (or new prospect) something is going on that we think will excite them or will be important to them. A donation opportunity then explains how the donor can make a difference, but it does not say there help is needed or that they are being asked to give. When we take this news approach, donors feel we are involving them. They do not end