Give donors the respect they deserve

Many fundraisers are aware of relationship fundraising. Ken Burnett’s famous book Relationship Fundraising has opened many eyes over the last 25 years. There aren’t many fundraisers who haven’t read this book. However, its vision and core message have never been fully implemented in our sector.

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Disce aut Discede: learn or leave!

The Latin phrase "Disce aut Discede" is used as the motto of many institutions and schools. It means "Learn or Leave". It's time we adopt this mindset in our sector as well.

There is plenty of best practice available in the sector, as you will see when The Commission on the Donor Experience presents her findings. But to be honest: there is more bad practice happening around us. More then we'd like to see.

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I can’t thank you enough

Sometimes it’s the simple things that transform the relationship with a donor into something magic. As part of my quest for examples of the best donor-centric fundraising for The Commission on the Donor Experience I came across an inspiring story I’d like to share with you. This is the fantastic story from the talented Sarah Roberts, from the time when she worked as Major Donor Fundraiser for Greenpeace Australia Pacific.

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Invest. Experience. Loyalty. Retention. Income. Repeat.

If you are able to keep your donors longer, you will raise more funds for your cause. Simple as that.

The simplest way I can explain it:

We invest in our staff and our fundraising programs. This should result in the best possible experience for both potential and existing donors. This influences satisfaction, commitment and trust, which constitute the donor’s attitude towards the charity. In other words: increased donor loyalty. This leads to the desired behaviour: higher retention rates. In turn this results in more income, which can be invested again. In projects for our beneficiaries, in staff and our fundraising program. And repeat.

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