Each stage presents its own challenges and opportunities so this 8-part blog series is dedicated to the different stages in an effort to equip you with ideas and inspiration to sustainably nurture and grow your donor relationships.
First up, we have donor relationship stage 1: Catch Me.
This is the stage of courtship. You are marketing yourself amongst a sea of competition, trying to attract and woo a donor by appealing to your similar interests and beliefs.
The Shepherd Centre is a registered charity providing a family-centred early intervention program to teach children born deaf or hearing impaired to develop spoken language.
Since 1970, The Shepherd Centre has assisted more than 2,500 children via early intervention Listening and Spoken Language therapy, providing families with assistance to develop their child’s spoken language, so they can unlock their complete potential and participate fully in society.
Premium Direct Mail
From 2011-2015 The Shepherd Centre invested heavily in premium direct mail acquisition, the packs included a number of premium items, ranging from tea towels and keyrings to gift cards and address labels.
This program proved to be successful and recruited almost 40,000 new supporters for The Shepherd Centre. At the height of performance, these campaigns saw response rates of 7%.
In 2014 we saw a decline in the performance of this acquisition channel with response rates and ROI declining to an unacceptable level. Response rates dropped to around 2% in 2015 and it was decided that this was no longer a viable acquisition channel for The Shepherd Centre.
In 2014 a telemarketing program was introduced to acquire cash donors. In 2015 this program was scaled up and recruited over 5000 new supporters. As with the premium direct mail program, the telemarketing program was initially successful at a larger scale but we found that this level could not be sustained. In 2016 the decision was made to take a monthly supply of data from LemonTree to call.
Sustainability the Key to Success
This program has now been running for four years and recruits around 150 new supporters every month. The monthly telemarketing acquisition program is still running today and proving successful in recruiting both cash and regular donors.
The focus for The Shepherd Centre is now on recruiting regular givers via a two-step program of a non-financial interaction followed by a phone request for a regular gift. This is currently in the testing phase as we investigate different lead sources and donor engagement tools.
If you’d like to learn more from Joanne and your fundraising peers, we invite you to join LemonTree’s Donor-Centricity Collective (DCC). Every quarter we host webinars and events with industry speakers, as well as commercial speakers so you learn how to bring best practice to the NFP industry. Learn from others and share your own insights and experiences – through our private social media groups, events and blogs…all for FREE!
It takes a tribe to raise a family and it takes a collective of passionate, like-minded peers to change an industry and help grow sustainable giving in Australia – join us today.
Thank you to Joanne Rogers for sharing her knowledge on the Catch Me stage in the donor relationship journey.
Next up in this series:
- Welcome Me
- Teach Me
- Grow Me
- Endear Me
- Keep Me
- Renew Me
- Win Me Back