Investing In Acquiring New Donors

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Do you want to grow your donor file or just replace donors you are losing through natural attrition? 

Investing in acquiring new donors is essential for organizations that rely on financial support from individuals.  You not only have to replace donors lost through attrition, but you need additional donors if you want to increase the level of support.

Setting Goals

You should first determine the number of new donors you want to acquire and calculate how much you can invest in acquiring them.  Your acquisition “allowable” or cost-to-acquire should be based on knowledge of your donors’ long-term value, usually based on five years of actual giving to your organization.  If you are unsure of these metrics, Meyer Partners can help you audit your donor file to determine your rate of attrition and your long-term donor value.

Most organizations need to invest in acquisition at an initial loss.  Donors will provide net revenue once you have successfully generated multiple gifts and cultivated them in the months and years following their first gift. 

How many new donors do you need?

Do you want to grow your donor file or just replace donors you are losing through natural attrition?  Depending on your answer, you should be able to determine the number of new donors needed to meet your goal.

Where do I find new donors?

Most organizations still rely on direct mail to acquire most of their new donors, using rental, exchange, or cooperative model lists.  Many organizations also have a history of acquiring new donors at events, but with pandemic restrictions on in-person events, most are acquiring new donors using direct mail and digital fundraising strategies.

Successful new donor strategies

The most successful new donor strategies require focusing on identifying the audience(s) most likely to give to your organization.  Developing carefully planned audience, offer and creative strategies—along with testing—will yield the best results.

Meyer Partners’ team of experienced direct response fundraising experts can help your organization craft a winning new donor acquisition program.  Please contact us to discuss your organization’s goals.