As an Individual Giving officer, I am tasked with raising income through a variety of platforms; legacies, text donations, events, direct mail campaigns, the list goes on. But, one area, which I feel is constantly over looked is regular giving.
Since joining my current organisation in January 2015, I have discovered that we have less than 100 donors giving regularly via standing order or direct debit. This is a great shame and a demonstration of how neglected our donors have been! We have over 800 ‘donors’ on our system and yet the solicitation has not been sufficient to convert them into regular donors. We are a small charity and until I turned up, there was no one specifically tasked with this job. This is not the case anymore and over the 17 months I have been improving relationships with our donors. They have received event invitations, hand-written thank you letters, phone calls and updates on the projects they have helped make happen. Warmth towards our organisation is at a peak and now is the time to get to work and convert this warmth into regular and reliable income from people that care about our cause. I am starting work on converting our supporters into regular donors and am excited to see how we get on!
Like many other small charities in the UK, we aim to rely less on uncertain sources of funding, such as grants from trusts, foundations and government, which are becoming harder to obtain due to higher demand. By becoming more self-sufficient, our work will be able to continue, regardless of funding received from outside sources. Regular donations from our supporters will allow us to continue our work, safe in the knowledge that funding is secure.
If just 100 donors gave £10 per month, we would increase our annual income by £12,000. For a small charity like us, this is a significant amount! If more charities focussed their time and efforts on donor stewardship, regular donations would be easier to gain.
To demonstrate the impact of regular donations over time, I created the chart below;
Does your organisation focus on regular gifts? What ways have you found are effective in increasing regular donations? Have you had a bad experience in trying to set up regular gifts? I’d love to hear from you so do get in touch!