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Cultivating Generations of Donors

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Most fundraising activities target older donors. This makes sense; they have supported organizations for years and continue to be the sector’s greatest source of donations. However, as this segment of the population shrinks, nonprofits need to create effective donor pipelines. Here are some quick tips to ensure your organization is cultivating donors for generations to come:

It’s a family affair

Large donors are often the bread and butter of nonprofits. It is critical that organizations steward these donors well. These practices should extend to the whole family. Look for opportunities to invite the children of donors to events, for tours, or to take on roles inside the organization.  Asking the child of a major donor to join a Young Professionals board, or attend a site visit, could ensure philanthropic support for years to come.

Target your strategy

Yesterday, there was yet another article on my LinkedIn feed about generations in the work place. While the corporate sector is a buzz with this, many nonprofits are still using a one-size fits all approach to their cultivation efforts. Different generations have preferences for how and when they give. Millennials, for example, might not attend a high priced gala. Save your stamps and throw a trivia night or create a crowd funding campaign for them. Take some time to understand the needs and preferences of your donors.  It’ll pay off.

Beef Up Bequests

This can be a sensitive topic for some fundraisers. I get it; people don’t like to talk about death. But the reality is Boomers are growing older, and often want to continue to support the organizations they care about.  Here’s a great, quick outline on legacy giving.

All generations want to give, to engage in their community and to support work that is meaningful to them. Be nimble in your fundraising efforts. Stop asking and Listen. Be creative. These extra efforts will ensure diverse funding streams for years to come.

How do you engage different generations in philanthropy?

Kerri Drumm from Purpose Aligned Consulting, LLC can help!

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After fifteen years in the nonprofit sector, Kerri Drumm founded Purpose Aligned Consulting in 2014. She has experience on three continents, in two languages and on literally thousands of mission-driven projects and programs.