Who is right?
“Donors give for emotional reasons. To reach them you need to reach their heart. Data only serves to hurt this process.”
“Donors are more and more interested in impact and effectiveness. The ‘next generation’ thinks differently. You need to prove that you are making a difference with information.”
For years we have been hearing these two sides argue – donors are driven by emotion or donors give rationally. To finally and definitively “answer” this debate, we researched over 10,000 individuals to determine, “Who is right?” (Drumroll…)
Or both. Depends on how you want to look at it.
Research shows that an overwhelming majority of Americans donate to charity each year; we have over 100 million donors. Guess what? They are not all alike. And most people have a bit of both the emotional and the rational side in them. We have dissected the donor landscape, to unearth for the first time critical points nonprofits need to know, such as:
- What are the different types of donors? What do they each care about?
- What information, if any, do donors want about nonprofit organization?
- For which types of nonprofits is information most sought after by donors?
- And ultimately, if we get better information to donors, by how much will it influence their giving behaviors?
Understanding our research results is essential for all organizations making decisions about the best way to connect with donors when fundraising. We have summarized all of our findings in a simple (and free) guidebook for nonprofits, More Money for More Good. Not only does this guidebook showcase the donor behaviors and preferences we discovered, it also provides nonprofits with ten specific tips to immediately:
- Collect the right information
- Communicate that information in a way that resonates with donors
- Connect with donors to meet their unique needs
Download your free guidebook now, and find out how you can collect, communicate, and connect in the best method for your organization’s audience.
Also, stay tuned for additional blogs here that:
- Summarize what we now know about the false ‘emotional’ vs. ‘rational’ dichotomy
- Provide interviews and case studies from leaders that have experience in collecting information, communicating, and connecting with donors
- Hear what foundations can do to foster a more effective philanthropic space
- Disclose the single game-changing opportunity for the philanthropic sector that we have discovered through our research
Greg Ulrich is director of advisory services at Hope Consulting. Greg’s industry experience includes the nonprofit sector, clean energy, healthcare, financial services, and industrial manufacturing. Greg also has extensive customer research experience, including surveying thousands of customers to understand opportunities to improve a leading healthcare company’s products and services.