06.22.23 2 min

Setting the stage for success with an omnichannel approach to donor retention 

Natasia Langfelder

Content Marketing Manager

What is omnichannel marketing?

An omnichannel campaign uses a variety of marketing tactics across various platforms during a short timeframe. This approach maximizes a campaign’s reach and optimizes donor engagement through multiple touchpoints. Executed correctly, an omnichannel campaign creates an immersive experience for your audience.

Why omnichannel now?

In 2020, as nonprofits worked to help those in need, many saw a surprising surge of charitable giving and new donors due to the pandemic and its aftermath. As we adjust to our new normal, nonprofits need to work to retain these new donors. The average donor retention rate is between 40-45%.1 What we’ve learned is that donors acquired during an episodic emergency are hard to retain and convert into regular givers. However, there are opportunities to engage these donors that you should pursue. Diversifying your channel mix is a great place to start.

Digital data co-ops are setting you up for success

The proliferation of digital data is changing the game. Now, nonprofit organizations can combine the power of direct mail, along with the immense potential of digital marketing channels. While we still rely heavily on direct mail to engage donors and drive results, digital cooperative donor databases such as Apogee and DonorBase are allowing us to venture beyond that by embracing enhanced digital platforms, which grant us deeper understanding of our target donor audiences. By merging the power of direct mail and digital marketing, we can amplify our impact and efficacy. To ensure seamless activation across both channels, it is crucial for nonprofits to develop comprehensive omnichannel campaigns.

The importance of “Donor First” strategy

Putting donor needs and interests first is the best way to make sure you stand out from the crowd in an increasingly saturated market. “Donor First” means using data to develop an audience of your most likely prospects and most engaged donors and developing personalized creative that will resonate with them and follow them to their preferred channels.

New technologies and platforms have given nonprofits an exciting array of channels to choose from when attempting to retain current donors, spread cause awareness and attract new donors. Channels such as email, display, push notifications, social media, direct response television, Connected TV  and podcast media buys are all options.

Use data to prioritize which donor segments you want to retain

Prioritization is key when it comes to developing a sustainable plan for donor retention. Start by focusing on the donors who are most likely to become recurring supporters. You can identify this audience segment by looking at your existing highest-value donors – their behaviors, demographic makeup, psychographics, transactional history – and using those same attributes to identify look-alikes among new prospects. Profiling and modeling are effective in identifying the donors with and the highest prospective lifetime value.

Where do emerging channels, such as Connected TV (CTV), fit into your current donor retention strategy?

Emerging channels like CTV are great for nonprofits to provide mission-focused messaging to donors. However, it’s important to look before you leap. Use data to assess your current campaigns. Get familiar with who your audience is, the channels they are most likely to use and how successful you have been when engaging donors on social channels. If you have seen success on social media, then it might be time for you to start leveraging emerging channels.

Developing an omnichannel retention strategy can be intimidating, but it’s key for growing one-time donors into lifelong supporters.

Let’s get you started on the path to omnichannel

If you’re eager to broaden your digital outreach to donors, enhance your omnichannel retention efforts, and reconnect with lapsed donors, look no further than Data Axle. As pioneers in the field of omnichannel marketing, our dedicated team of experts is prepared to dive right in, utilizing our cutting-edge Constellation or Mountain series of models to create the most effective target audiences.

We not only assist with campaign design, execution, and optimization but also offer support throughout the entire process. Reach out to us today to explore how you can integrate digital donor data and embark on the journey to transform your marketing strategy.

1 https://bloomerang.com/retention

Natasia Langfelder

Thanks for reading

Written by Natasia Langfelder, Content Marketing Manager

With a passion for writing and an enthusiasm for data and tech, Natasia creates content designed to deliver nuggets of wisdom to help nonprofits elevate their data governance.