Friday, March 11, 2011

Identifying What Tugs The Heart-Strings Of Donors

Note: This is a summary of an older story from Nonprofit Times TV about what motivated non profit donors.

Over the last surveyed year, approximately 90 million adults or around a third of the American population, have made donations to charity. The two overriding questions are why these individuals were motivated to give, and why others were not. A new Heart of the Donor Study conducted by the Russ Reid Company based in Pasadena California found that donors gave to an average of 5 charitable organizations over a 12 month period. Issues such as disaster relief, domestic hunger, healthcare, people with disabilities, and veterans’ causes accounted for at least half of all charitable giving.

Heart of the Donor survey results

The survey found that levels of giving increased as levels of education increased, and men and women generally made donations in equal proportion. There appears to be a link between apathy in religion and politics, and apathy in supporting a related cause. The survey posed a variety of question via the internet, and through a demographically representative online research panel. As many as 6 out of 10 don't set aside a formalized budget for giving. The study reveals that the people who donate the most and with most consistency, are very intentional about their donation strategies. Nothing is left to impulse when it comes to how much they give, who they give to, and when that giving takes place.

As many as 60% of donors tend to make impulse decisions when it comes to their giving. This makes it necessary for nonprofits to constantly think about presenting people with emotionally compelling stories along with convenient and immediate options for response. Typically, receiving a second gift from a donor is challenging. Three quarters of respondents who gave more than once to a particular cause said they did so for three reasons. The organization that received more than one gift had a clearly defined mission, they made the donor feel that their gift genuinely made a difference, and finally, they explained to the donor exactly what their gift accomplished. These three reasons were cited across all demographic groups.

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