Social Donors Are Less Committed To Cause

Social donors are generally not deeply committed to nonprofits yet those networks are critical to organizations being successful at events and peer-to-peer donation asks. The “social donors” also tend to write checks.

Those are among the findings of an online survey of 1,056 social donors conducted by Edge Research between Oct. 11-22 for OneCause, a mobile fundraising technology firm. Social donors were defined as those who give through event-based and peer-to-peer fundraising.

While the donors might not have a deep commitment to a nonprofit there must be some level of familiarity and positive feelings toward an organization for that first gift. Converting the person into a regular donor is quite another story. The survey showed that 86 percent need to be familiar with the nonprofit and its mission; 68 percent need a favorable giving experience and feelings toward the nonprofit; 54 percent are likely to give again in the same fashion; and, only 28 percent are likely to become regular donors.

Baby Boomers are most likely to give an additional gift if asked by a friend, family members or a colleague (55 percent) whereas Millennials respond better (49 percent) than others to a letter (49 percent) and an email (46 percent) from an organization. Bequest requests do poorly among all age groups of social donors, according to survey results.

Key survey findings include:

* Many social donors aren’t deeply committed to a nonprofit. Slightly more than half (51 percent) of social donors are only somewhat familiar or unfamiliar with an organization prior to donating, with 38 percent of social donors giving to a new nonprofit for the first time.

* Social networks are critical to the success of event-based and peer-to-peer fundraising. The majority of social donors find out about giving opportunities from a friend, family member, or colleague through word-of-mouth, social media, and email.

* Ease, mission, and impact are top motivators. The number one reason why social donors give is because it is easy to do. While approximately eight in 10 donors found their last social donation “very easy,” there are still nearly 20 percent who did not.

* There’s great opportunity for increasing social donor retention and conversion. A little more than one-quarter (28 percent) of social donors say they will become annual or monthly donors in the future. Just more than half (54 percent) anticipate repeating their giving behavior in the next 12 months.

* Pre- and post-event communication impacts conversion. Donors who did not receive follow-up communication are significantly less likely to say they will convert to a regular monthly or annual donor.

* Social donors care more about impact than recognition. The biggest factor driving likelihood to convert to a monthly or annual donor is that social donors understand the true impact of their donation – that is a key driver to long-term engagement.

“We wanted to design a study report that would not only deliver fresh donor insights, but also provide tactical and strategic direction to help nonprofits improve their event-based and peer-to-peer fundraising,” said Steve Johns, chief executive officer at OneCause. “Our hope is that nonprofits can take our findings to better target, cultivate, and convert social donors into active givers and longtime, loyal donors.”

The full study can be downloaded at: https://info.onecause.com/social-donor-study