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Beyond a Buck

donations3 Most fundraising organizations want to engage donors in recurring donations, and surprisingly many technology Platform Solutions and payment processors make it difficult to accept and manage recurring donations. Make sure your technology can do this. Also don't just ask for money. You should be able to capture important information on a form that can be leveraged down the road for strategic communication. And if you offer a variety of funds or designations a donor may support, it is important to understand the drivers behind this area of interest as it may allow the organization to expand its work in certain areas that resonate with prospective donors. Also ask why a prospect may choose not to donate as there may be lots of good information here as well. As with any outreach to your donors, you want to think carefully about how you present online giving to them. Ben Di Maggio, technical director and partner at website design firm Digital Loom, recommends asking these questions “before you slap that donate now button on your site.” Is it important to keep track of your donors’ contact information? For non-profits, the answer to this question is seldom, “no”—if someone cares enough about your organization to donate money to it, they're someone worth keeping in touch with. The real issue to resolve is how their information is going to get from the donation process into your contact-relationship management system. Recurring? Do you want to allow donors to "set it and forget it," so that they're giving you 10 bucks a month indefinitely? Attach extra information to this donation? Is it important for your donors to be able to say that this donation should be in memory of/in honor of someone else? Should they be able to specify to which part of your organization they want this money to go? In addition to these considerations, here a final word of caution: Don't probe for information if you don't know what you want to do with it or how you are going to mine the data once you have it.
A Single Source for Donor Data
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