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#5 The usual suspects of attrition

The hard truth is that sometimes agencies provide poor quality donors. I’m sure that this is not a practice that always has menace aforethought, but it can and will happen. Whether the regular giving donors were signed-up from very low socio-economic areas, are too young, or under confused circumstances, occasionally you will need to have some tough conversations with your agency. What is certain is that your agency should suffer from the poor attrition, not your organisation. Clawbacks or reasonable rebates are you first line of defense against this, but you should always report any complaints from donors back to your fundraising partner. If you hear any of the usual suspects like “they sai

#4 Your cancellation logic can only be as complex as your database

Which donors you cancel, which ones you keep, and which ones you reactivate may depend on a few aspects. The contract with your agency, the reason for the rejection, the number of rejections and your acquisition and retention budgets are just a few. Saying goodbye to the wrong donors can lead to a shortfall of income, missing out on clawback refunds and even the disgruntling of donors. However, none of these factors can be more complex than the CRM logic used to process your donors. If you keep your codes consistent and simple and your rules modest you will avoid all mishaps from miscoding and mistakes from mismanagement. Moreover, you’ll find it easier to communicate your needs with your do

Interlude – Jordan versus Jesus

This week, the PFRA responded to the ACCC research by stating their own evidence from quality assurance reviews shows no difference between the standards of in-house vs agency or employed vs contracted fundraisers. The donor experience is a hot topic in the world of face-to-face, and deserves to be given the airtime that the ACCC and PFRA are giving it. My default mode defers to the stats. If the PFRA see no difference in the standards whatever the fundraiser’s employment status then I bow to their knowledge. I have been fortunate to work with, under, alongside and above many face-to-face managers, and can say hand-on-heart, that they are the difference - not the style of remuneration. Every

#3 Your organisation needs a couple of years to acclimatise

Your charity probably needs a couple of years to acclimatise to any new fundraising channel before it is accepted as ‘business as usual’. There is no way to avoid this ill-feeling and nervousness, but there are ways to expedite this period. Do the leg-work with all stakeholders by killing them with kindness and knowledge no matter what their initial views on your chosen channel. Volunteers who feel cheated by paid fundraisers working like mercenaries for their dollar need to be wined and dined, listened to and empathised with. Spend the twenty minutes on the phone that they need to feel reassured and their points taken.

#2 Ghost batch – bringing donors back from the dead

I cannot take credit for the title, but I will share the learnings. Rejecting due to ‘insufficient funds’ at the first attempt to debit the RG may be a great indicator for the future behaviour, but this doesn’t mean you should give up on them – everyone deserves a second chance. Most agency contracts will allow you to claw back your No Shows, but this doesn’t mean that you must cancel the pledge and take them out of the cohort. By all means, claw back the fee as your contract allows, but you can pop them back in for the next month under a new code. A pledge that successfully debits four months per year will still be worth more dead than alive.

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