Our client is a leading international relief organization that helps support people in need all around the world.
The Challenge: Deeper Engagement with Mid-Level Donors
Our client has a sizable group of mid-level donors who play an important role in revenue generation, each contributing between $1,000 and $9,999 annually. Over time, many of these folks grow into major donors. Together, we understood the importance of stewarding and cultivating these donors in order to fulfill our client's mission. With the bulk of our client's attention focused on working in the communities where its members serve, they need a partner that can engage these donors consistently.
The Solution: Launching a High-Touch Ambassador Program
To encourage mid-level donors to give more, THD implemented a high-touch ambassador program that combines analytics and personal engagement to deliver a more personalized experience to each donor through a four-step process.
Step 1: Identify the optimal audience. Mid-level donors were prioritized for cultivation based on a number of factors, including country of origin, responsiveness, size of the original gift, and wealth capacity.
Step 2: Engage and enhance donor relationships. Ambassadors contacted compatible donors through a series of mediums, including personal phone calls, handwritten notes, and email communications.
Step 3: Capture and catalog donor information. Donor-specific data was loaded into a robust database that outlined each individual’s interests, communication preferences, attitudes, opinions, personal history, family history, connection to the cause, and interest in planned giving. Using a proprietary coding process, these attributes were leveraged for increased personalization over time.
Step 4: Report and analyze interactions. Ambassadors used donor-specific information to guide future interactions. They analyzed a number of reports—including year-over-year performance, key indicators of the likelihood of upgrading or downgrading, and pipeline development updates—before going back to Step 1 and repeating the process.
Results: Increased Engagement, More Upgrades & Higher Value Donors
On average, donors who connected with an ambassador gave 10 percent more than those who didn’t. What’s more, the ambassador program also increased the chances a mid-level donor would increase their gift amount. While only 12 percent of donors who weren’t contacted by an ambassador ended up giving more, 21 percent of those who received handwritten notes, 19 percent of those who talked on the phone, and 19 percent of those who received voicemails increased their gifts.
Beyond that, our client also benefited from discovering planned gifts that were previously unreported, moving non-major gift prospects out of the gift officer’s portfolio to further streamline the ambassador program, and creating ongoing, highly-personalized engagement plans for each donor. As a result, our client freed up funds they can use to help those in need around the world.