Top 3 Donor Turn-Offs

Ever thought about what the top 3 donor turn-offs are? 

As fundraisers, we spend a lot of time thinking about what motivates people to donate, but rarely stop to consider the opposite.  What stops people from giving?

At OKP, we not only support the sector with our expertise and advice, we are also philanthropists giving to a wide range of charities and not-for-profit organisations.  So as donors, here are our pet peeves – the things that make us reconsider our support – or things that make us make new donations elsewhere

1)     Insincere ThankingAs one of the basics of fundraising, it surprises me how many organisations can get thanking so wrong.  While most not-for-profits have got the message that thanking your donors is a must-do, many are still either too generic or over-effusive with their thanks, coming across as insincere.   Studies have shown that insincere thanking has the same effect as not thanking at all.  Not only is the donor less likely to support your organisation, it makes them less likely to be charitable in the future. 

2)     Too much communicationWhile keeping your supporters engaged and informed is vital to building long-term donor relationships, quantity is no substitute for quality when it comes to communication.  When you speak to your donors, you have to have something relevant, interesting or important to say or they will stop listening.   

3)     Being too presumptuousThe worst offenders of this one are organisations engaged in event fundraising and charity gifts.  Just because someone sponsors their friend in a fun-run or buys their mum a cow for Christmas, doesn’t necessarily mean they want to start donating regularly or even have in interest in the cause themselves.  As a donor, having a charity assume your donation is the start of a long and fruitful relationship feels like talking about marriage on the first date.  Just like dating, you need to take the time to get to know a new donor and be respectful of their decision if they are not after a long-term commitment.

Analysing your fundraising and communication practices from your donors point of view is an exceptionally valuable exercise but one that many organisations find difficult to do.  Engaging an expert, like O’Keefe and Partners, can provide you with that outside perspective and help identify hidden opportunities. If you think you could benefit from fresh eyes, call Julie Johnson on 1300 721 799.

May 2013

Contact OKP on:       1300 721 199      www.okp.com.au       enquiries@okp.com.au