Reactivate Donors

Upgrading and Reactivating Regular Donors

Regular donors are one of an organisation’s most loyal groups of donors. Their frequent and reliable financial contributions can help your organisation plan ahead and grow.

Whilst most organisations focus on converting cash donors to regular donors or acquiring new donors to their regular giving program, it is important to not forget those donors already participating in the program. This includes regular communications and acknowledgement of their participation in the regular giving program, but should also include both reactivation and upgrade elements to counteract attrition and to help your program keep up with increases in administration and program costs.

Reactivation campaigns should target those donors who were once active regular donors but are no longer. Your organisation must make a few decisions before launching such a program. These include:

  • Will you include those who actively cancelled their regular donations or only those that cancelled inactively?
  • If you include those who actively cancelled, are their certain cancellation reasons that you will exclude from a reactivation campaign?
  • How long from a cancellation will you wait to try to reactivate regular gifts? Will there be only one or multiple reactivation attempts?
  • Will you try to reactivate donors at their previous regular giving amount, or will you try to reactivate them all at a lower, less prohibitive giving amount (which can later be upgraded)?
  • How will you record opt-out requests for donors who do not wish to receive these kinds of appeals?

Upgrade campaigns should target active donors in your regular giving program in an effort to increase their overall giving amount. Decisions to be made before launching such a program include:

  • How long must a person have been an active regular donor before you try to upgrade them?
  • How frequently will you attempt an upgrade? Will this be affected by the frequency of their donation (E.g. annual donors vs monthly donors)?
  • How much will you try to upgrade the donors by? Will it be a fixed amount or a percentage of their regular gift?
  • How will you record opt-out requests for donors who do not wish to receive these kinds of appeals?

Both reactivation and upgrade campaigns can be executed through mail, phone or email. The decision on which method to use should be based on the costs, the resources available to your organisation and (if possible) the testing of methods to see which one is more successful.

Even smaller organisations with very limited resources can carry out a reactivation or upgrade campaign by including a reactivation or upgrade response mechanism to the appropriate donors with their annual tax receipt mailing.