Will our donors just stop giving? 7 things to do

Short answer: No. Most will not.

More nuanced answer: Some donors might stop. Others might need to decrease their giving. Those whose income or wealth is based on investments, have taken shocking losses. Many others have lost jobs or taken pay cuts.

Many donors will keep giving. Some will increase their giving, depending on how well you connect with them.

But seriously, loss in income, especially over the short-term, could be worse from your high-end donors, meaning a disproportionate impact on overall revenue.

Here are something you can do about it, from the Passionate Giving Blog, at What If Donors Stop Giving?

Note that these steps are specifically about your top donors, those you cultivate through direct relationships. But many of these things translate well into smart action for your wider group of donors:

  1. Revisit your strategic plan for your portfolio.
  2. Review the donors from whom you had expected gifts to come in between now and September.
  3. Re-write your strategy through September. Focus on reporting back impact, thanking and keeping donors informed on how your non-profit is reacting to the current crisis.
  4. Call donors to check in on them. (Call as many donors as you possibly can! Donor care is not just for major donors!)
  5. Stay highly in-touch with all donors in your portfolio, EVEN donors who say they can’t give right now.
  6. Be creative — use every bit of technology that you can muster.
  7. Keep working your plan. (Change what needs to change, but keep what still makes sense.)


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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About the blogger

Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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