The Most Costly Mistake That Charities Make

As the nonprofit sector grows increasingly competitive, charities cannot afford to make too many mistakes. Unfortunately, there’s still one mistake in particular that charities are making, and it’s costing them both donors and resources.

The mistake is inundating donors with unwanted solicitations, whether that’s in the form of snail mail, e-mails, texts, or phone calls. It’s costly because it takes up time, money, and assets and in the end it only annoys donors and makes them less likely to donate in the future.

Part of the reason it’s still so commonly committed is because once upon a time, it was considered a best practice. But it is now 2017. People live busy lives. The average American is already swamped with junk mail; the last thing they need is more spam.

Do this instead: ask donors if they would like to receive newsletters and other information pertaining to the charity. Better yet, leave a checkbox on their donation form so that they don’t feel compelled to say “yes” when asked in person.

Believe it or not, there are literally thousands of people who just want to make a one-time donation… and that’s okay. It’s unrealistic to think that sending tons of mail will convert this demographic into life-long donors. If anything, it will have the reverse effect.

Not to mention, due to technology, most donors refer to an organization’s website for all the latest news and updates. Heavily invested donors can also follow the organization on social media as a way to stay current.

In the end, if the person cares enough about the charity and the cause, they will continue to donate. It is the charity’s responsibility to ask donors whether or not they would like to receive additional news or information pertaining to the organization. It’s all about respecting the wants and desires of contributors.