69% of Nonprofits Are Unsure if They Have a Formal Strategy in Place for Managing Donor Loyalty
Sage Nonprofit survey provides insight into donor loyalty strategies, programs and tactics
IRVINE, Calif. (February 25, 2013) – Sage North America today released the results of its donor loyalty survey. One of the most surprising findings is that only 31% of the respondents answered “Yes” when asked if their organization has a formal program or strategy in place for managing donor loyalty, while 69% answered “No” or “Not Sure.”
Of the organizations with a donor loyalty program, 74% identify “Development” as the function that is primarily responsible for and owns the donor loyalty strategy. This was followed by “Executive Management” (41%), the “Board of Directors” (24%) and “Program Director or Management” (24%). The majority of organizations with a donor loyalty strategy revealed that they review it annually, followed by biannually and monthly.
When asked about the biggest external challenge to their organization, 46% of survey respondents selected “Potential losses in local, state and federal funding as a result of budget cuts.” “Economic downturn affecting available dollars” was the second biggest external challenge, with 34% of respondents selecting it. The top two internal challenges identified by survey respondents were “Reducing costs without impacting services” (39%) and “Doing more with less” (35%).
“In the for-profit world it costs five times as much to do business with a new customer as it does to do business with an existing customer and the nonprofit world faces similar challenges,” said Bridget Brandt, director of marketing at Sage Nonprofit Solutions. “Knowing what percent of an organization’s donations are recurring is a first step in benchmarking a donor loyalty program. However, a significant number of organizations surveyed did not know what percent of their donations were recurring. Organizations must strive to ensure that their donors are listening, engaged and motivated to action repeatedly.”
Other findings from the survey include:
- Handwritten notes and in-person thank yous are the most popular displays of gratitude.
- 29% of organizations do nothing when a donor lapses.
- The pen is the most popular donor loyalty gift.
- 69% of respondents use annual reports to communicate how donors’ monies will be used.
The online survey was conducted in December 2012 through an email sent to Sage nonprofit customers in North America. Responding to the survey were 822 individuals. Key survey results can be viewed here.
Sage has been serving nonprofit and governmental organizations throughout North America for more than 30 years. The company helps more than 32,000 unique not-for-profit organizations increase efficiency and more easily manage their operations through the use of technology. From fund accounting, donor and fundraising management, and grant management to online donation processing, human resources (HR), payroll and fixed asset management, Sage offers a software product or service to meet the organization’s need. Follow Sage Nonprofit Solutions on Twitter® (www.twitter.com/SageNonprofit) and Facebook® (www.facebook.com/sagenonprofit), read its blog (www.sagewords.net), and join its community for not-for-profits (http://community.sagenonprofit.com).
Sage is a leading global supplier of business management software and services for small and midsized businesses. The Sage Group plc, formed in 1981, was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1989 and now employs more than 13,500 people and supports more than 6 million customers worldwide. For more information about Sage in North America, please visit the company website at NA.Sage.com. Follow Sage North America on Facebook, Facebook.com/SageNorthAmerica, and Twitter, Twitter.com/SageNAmerica.
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