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Martin Paul | More Strategic
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Top Tips from the Australasian Fundraising Forum 2014

Top Tips from the Australasian Fundraising Forum 2014

After a fantastic couple of days soaking up so much great content from so many talented fundraisers we thought we would just pick out 13 very practical suggestions from some of the speakers. The generosity of everyone who spoke and shared their stories and, more importantly, their facts was extraordinary. It really is a great privilege to work in a sector where everyone is genuinely committed to everyone else doing better. Thank you to all the speakers and to F+P Magazine for creating such a valuable opportunity to share, learn and connect.

  1. Edm’s sent on a Tuesday at 10am were 3 times more effective than the same time on a Thursday
  2. Popups on the website during tax appeal increased online donations by 30%
  3. Put Donate Now buttons in the middle of edm text
  4. Link your auction items to outcome specific price points with an ask from a beneficiary
  5. Always send your “banker pack” as the second ask (increased 2nd gift rate from 3% to 43%)
  6. Use crowdfunding to pay for your TV coverage of campaigns (then convert to RG)
  7. Understand if your Twitter and Facebook audiences are different and send different messages
  8. People have recruited RG donors from Facebook at $46/donor and 2.18 roi but the volumes are small
  9. Always, always promote residuary bequests, they are 10 times the value
  10. Make purely commercial decisions on contested estates – they can be up to 30% of your annual value.
  11. Reactivation starts at the point of cancellation – make it as pleasant as possible to increase the likelihood of subsequent reactivation
  12. Use values based conversations and listen to the donor
  13. Use powerful visuals and stories as this brilliant example does (and never underestimate the importance of the music!):  Greenpeace New Zealand People Like You



Do People Trust Charities?

Do People Trust Charities?

Trust is the most precious asset for charities. It is fundamental for all giving but it is fragile and easily eroded. We conducted a large scale public survey of over 2,000 Australians to understand and track their levels of trust in charities.

  • Which type of people and donors trust charities more?
  • How trusted are charities?
  • What attitudes and beliefs drive trust? Is trust improving or not?

Click here on our infographic, Do People Trust Charities, for the answers to all these questions!

Engaging Donors

Engaging Donors

As acquisition becomes more expensive, less predictable and high volumes harder to find, we must focus more of our energy on retaining the precious donors we already have. Measuring attrition, lifetime value and upgrade rates are great indicators of loyalty. Measuring multiple relationships is a really good indicator of your success in “cross selling”, or extending, your donors. But these database measures don’t tell us the full story of how engaged our donors really are. After all, is the habitual monthly donor who has forgotten to cancel really the same as the passionate but periodic cash donor?

To see if our communications are really making a difference we need to understand and measure what constitutes being engaged. To our mind there are both behavioural and emotional indicators of engagement:

  • Advocating on behalf of the charity (proactive and defensive)
  • Participating and entering into dialogue with the charity
  • Influence exerted and introductions made: corporate, families, HINW
  • Attitude – recognition and attribution of success to the charity
  • Attendance –service usage, event attendance
  • Volunteerism – short term project roles through to long term commitment
  • Giving – recency, frequency, value, multiple channels
  • Communications consumption – ‘contactability’, uses of media (opt in, open, read, forward, respond)
  • Passion indicators – is the charity their favorite, do they associate their identity with the cause, are they proud of their association?
  • Brand appreciation – understanding and valuing the role the charity plays in changing the world

From research conducted with five leading charities in Australia we have identified some of the key traits that predict whether people will give a second gift when asked.  They key drivers were found to be about identity, passion and relative importance.

The Supporter Engagement Score

This year we are launching a study to help increase loyalty and lifetime value by measuring and improving supporter engagement.


Annual survey – conducted with a sample of your supporters (preferably 3,000)

Multi-charity – we aim to engage 7 to 10 charities so you can get a relative performance measure

Segment based – so we can identify if your regular donors are more or less engaged than your cash donors or of your new donors are different from your established support base

Tracking – over at least 3 years to see if your supporter journey communications are increasing engagement

Comparable – we will use a common suite of questions across multiple charities to measure engagement and satisfaction

Tailored – we will ask questions specific to your cause and brand to understand what differentiates you and what donors most value about your work and messaging


Ongoing tracking of supporter engagement so that you can see if improvements in your supporter journey are working

  • Identify and connect with your most engaged donors
  • Identify what messages and beliefs most impact on engagement and value so you can deliver the most compelling messages to your supporters.
  • Demonstrate the link between engagement and value
  • Understand who your supporters are, what they value in what you do and whether this is changing over time.
  • Compare your engagement score to other member charities
  • Compare the experiences of different types of supporter by longevity or channel to identify how best to improve supporter loyalty.


Collective and Tailored Questions

The survey will incorporate standard questions to allow comparison across organisations. These will cover issues such as:

€        Giving Portfolio – who else they give to?

€        Net Promoter Score – will they advocate for you?

€        Satisfaction – how well do you treat them?

€        Passion and identity – how important are you to them?

€        Future intentions – what else might they do for you?

€        Values and beliefs – how aligned are you to their core beliefs?

 In addition, we will work with you to create questions that are specific to your cause and messages, these may cover topics such as:

€        Motivations for giving

€        Knowledge of what you do

€        Importance of what you do

€        What makes you different from others

€        Brand attributes and appreciation

€        What they want to hear about

 To be part of this important, ongoing study into your supporters attitudes please contact Martin
on 0435 306 202 or martin@morestrategic.co.uk

More Strategic is a leading not for profit marketing consultancy.





Australias Most Popular Causes

The most popular causes to support in Australia are health and medical research and children’s charities, each claiming around 45% of public popularity. Our study asked over 2,000 Australians which sorts of organisations they most like to support with donations. Animal charities came in 3rd but interestingly, in a similar study that only looked at people who were fundraising on behalf of charities through peer to peer platform Everyday Hero, they came in far lower. Perhaps this suggests that those who support animal welfare are less confident that their peers would also give to that cause.

We also asked elsewhere in the survey how much the donor had given to charities in the past 12 months. Now we recognise that this is self reported and therefore not necessarily an accurate reflection of their actual giving, but the relativities between the cause areas are still valid. The red line shows the proportion of respondents who claim to have given more than $500 in the past year. This reveals that although overseas development and emergency relief organisations are only supported by 19% of the population, over a quarter of those supporting them donate more than $500. We also saw in our study that people who gave to these organisations had a greater belief that their donation “gets there”.

Most overseas development agencies have been leading the way on monthly regular giving which we know is associated with a higher annual value. However, the organisations that are securing the highest share of donors giving more than $500 are religious organisations at 27%, but with a popularity of just 12%. In another study we saw that religious charities were by a long way the most popular cause to support amongst people who described themselves as religious.

The study reinforces the notion that, to succeed in fundraising you don’t have to be the most popular cause – you just have to have a small number of dedicated supporters. Look at one of the least popular causes – Indigenous Organisations – only identified by 5% of the population as an organisation they most like to support but punching well above its weight in having 17% of donors giving more than $500. It is one of only two areas where the score for popularity is lower than the proportion of $500+ donors.

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April 2024