Donor fatigue is a term used to describe the diminished response by donors to nonprofits’ requests for donations. Donors get tired of constantly hearing the need for donations, without seeing clear indications of improvements as a result of donations made in the past.

As a charitable organisation relying on donations, donor fatigue is likely to be be amongst your top concerns to increase donation revenue. Especially because continuing to make requests for donations in the wake of an already diminished response only compounds the issue, and adds to the levels of fatigue.

Poorly managed donor fatigue can contribute to losing over a third of your donors. According to a report from the Fundraising Effectiveness Project, the retention rate of first-time donors is 19%, while the retention-rate of repeat donors is 63%. This shows how important it is to both avoid donor fatigue and retain first-time donors.

Here are the top 3 causes for donor fatigue and how your charity can leverage features on Incitement platform to fight donor fatigue and increase donation revenue.

The Top 3 Causes of Donor Fatigue & Practical Tips To Combat Them

1. Lack of connectedness to donors

According to the National Council of Nonprofits, people donate because they believe in the work and the mission of the charity. Staying in touch regularly (but not overwhelmingly!) with past donors helps them to stay connected to the work your charity does, and informs them about how their donation makes a difference.

On Incitement, you can post regular updates on your charity page, and each update will be automatically emailed to each follower of your page. Not only that, but on Incitement, charities that pro-actively create transparency for their donors by publishing frequent updates are rewarded with Purpose Points. This means you can actually generate donation revenue for your charity by being transparent! Sign up for an Incitement account here.

On Incitement, charities that pro-actively create transparency for their donors by publishing frequent updates are rewarded with Purpose Points. This means you can actually generate donation revenue for your charity by being transparent

Mixing in solid information about tangible results with powerful images or videos helps donors stay informed about the impact of their donations to the community. This will help maintain a strong connection with your donors, and increase donor retention.

To combat this cause of donor fatigue:

  • Balance requests for donation with “results reporting”
  • Provide rich content using pictures & videos to immerse donors
  • Make softer requests for donations in a context of success stories

2. No visual = no engagement (and lost donors)

Your donors don’t just want to read about how their donation is used, they want to see the impact that they’re making in action. Take lots of quality photos and videos of your work so that you can share it with your donors later.

Checkout this beautiful project listing by Fugee Org

Notice how they post video updates from their beneficiaries

Charities that take pictures and videos of their work are the best at maintaining a steady flow of donations. The reason is simple: people like to be reminded that their donation is being used effectively, and imagery is one of the best ways to do that.

To combat this cause of donor fatigue:

  • Show & tell! This will get you the greatest engagement
  • Use plenty of visual to emotionally move donors.
  • Use before-and-after pictures and stories to emphasize on impact
  • Photos are great, but videos are better! Make donors feel they’re part of the action.

3. Fundraising events are no fun(ds)!

Just like your donors don’t want to only hear from you at the end of the year when you need money, they also don’t want to only be invited to meet with you when you’re chasing after their wallets. Consider inviting your donors where you aren’t solely asking for donations, like volunteer opportunities or even just information sessions, where your supporters can meet one another and inform others about your charity’s good works.

Incitement is launching an exclusive Live Stream platform for charities that will allow you to host all your online live events, allows your donors to organize watch parties with their friends (how’s that for turning your supporters into ambassadors!), and where donors can tip you for your work without you even having to ask for it. More on this very soon 😉

To combat this cause of donor fatigue:

  • Organize events focused on creating a valuable experience for donors
  • Make your events fun, engaging, and informative, and showcase the impact of your work
  • Involve donors in your events beyond just a name on the guest list
  • Sign up for Incitement today to get updates on the liev stream platform

In summary: how to combat donor fatigue

  • You can now earn Purpose Points on Incitement by posting updates on your charity page showing the impact of your work. We believe in transparency, and you can now earn rewards for creating it!
  • Each time you post an update, all of your followers will be notified via email. This is a great way to provide consistent updates to your donors and involve them in your work.
  • Be sure to list your charity on Incitement today so that you’ll be amongst the first to know when the live stream platform is available and how you can leverage your video content to better attract and retain donors