Do your donors give just once a year?

It used to be common for nonprofits to call their general donor fundraising program the Annual Giving Program.

It was outdated already years ago, and based on an ancient expectation that many, even most, donors gave one time a year.

“Annual” donors in the Programs I was involved with gave an average of around 2.4 gifts per year.

Then — and now — a portion of donors really do give just once a year. That’s just one giving habit of many. Don’t make it your stated (or unstated) assumption that more than one donation per year is just not possible.

The Better Fundraising Blog challenges us to have an abundance mindset about what donors may choose to do, at How an Abundance Mindset Results in Raising More Money:

Believing that a large percentage of your donors would love to make multiple gifts results in a fundraising plan that produces a large percentage of donors making multiple gifts.

Donors like to donate. A lot of them like it enough to do it more than once a year.

That’s a good place for you to start your assumptions about donors.


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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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