Your Donor’s Preferences Are Most Important in Online Fundraising

Brian Barela

Have you ever asked your donors which online communication channel they prefer, and how often?

It’s easy to skip right over your donor’s preferences and tailor your online communication tools to your preferences. Facebook seems to be the place many ministry fundraisers communicate primarily from their preferences.  ‘Please Do Not Create a Facebook Page for Your Personal Ministry’ revealed how few people ever return or engage a Facebook page’s content outside of the Newsfeed.

From polling a few friends it still seems email is the most preferred form of online communication from the majority of donors.

Consider sending out a short survey or emailing 3-5 donors personally to ask them about their preferences. It’s also important to ask how often they check the places you ask about. I know that 15% of my donors use Facebook, but I do not know how often they check Facebook. This lack of information has definitely weakened my effectiveness communicating there, as I’m not sure whether it’s a primary or secondary channel. If it’s a primary channel I would invest more time and increase the frequency of my posting. If it’s secondary then I should spend even less time and start using more links to drive them over to our blog.

There’s Always an Opportunity to Segment 

If you have been using an email service such as Mailchimp for six months or longer and are sending just one email to your entire list, it’s time to start segmenting that list and sending even more tailored content. Using your analytics, determine which supporters are more connected to you, and which are more connected to your ministry. Break this one large group into two subgroups, and balance the content around their preferences. This does not mean sending only personal content to those that are most connected to you, but that it’s effective to lead with the information that’s most valuable to them. If there are people that feel significantly connected to you, and 95% of your emails talk about your ministry, chances are those donors are not getting as much value out of that communication as they could be.

What have you done to help determine your donor’s online communication preferences? 

By Brian Barela | Posted: Dec 29, 2011
Category: Fundraising | Permalink | Post a comment | Trackback URL.

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