Fundraising News: Face to face donors cooled off by charities

Emma Maier

Donors recruited through face-to-face fundraising may stop giving because charities' follow-up communications fail to match the initial enthusiasm of street fundraisers.

A new study looking into the retention and development of face-to-face donors found a gulf between street recruiters' passionate approach and the typically staid communications that follow.

Face Value analyses the communications that the report's author, Neil Henderson, creative planner at specialist charity direct marketing agency DMS, received after signing up to nine charities on the street.

The report found that many charities don't take the opportunity to engage donors through subsequent communications, and those that do often don't acknowledge that the donor signed up through face to face.

"There are many easy opportunities for charities to improve their communications in order to tackle attrition rates and maximise their income from face to face," said Henderson.

Typically, the largest number of donors cancel before the first donation is made. A few more drop off over the period of the first few donations, and eventually the exodus tails off to leave about 40-50 per cent of those who originally signed up still donating regularly.

The Face Value report will be made available during April.

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