SlideShare a Scribd company logo
Geoff Handy, Humane Society of the United
                                   States
                     Sheetal Persaud, hjc




                                #bridgeconf
   Why advocacy is powerful for fundraising

   Strategies for:
    ◦ Recruiting and cultivating advocates
    ◦ Converting advocates into donors
The opportunity




3
Non-donors who’d taken action online were 2.3x more likely to donate
           than non-donors in the email file who hadn’t
                               4
Source: Charitable Memberships, Volunteering and Discounts: Evidence from a Large-Scale Online Field
         Experiment. May 2009, National Bureau of Economic Research, A. Lange, A. Stocking.



                                            5
   “Advocates will donate. Donors will take
    action.”
All HSUS Online
Donors

                  Have acted
                  62%

                               Have not
                               38%
Have acted
85%


        Have
        not
        15%
   Both are valid ways to help any cause

   Advocacy actions, and advocacy victories,
    “prime the pump” for appeals
    ◦ They tie mission and giving together
    ◦ They enable the motivated advocate to take another
      step




                            9
Source: Convio, 2002




10
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
   Test various channels and strategies
    ◦   Organic (e.g., tell a friend)
    ◦   Social media and mobile
    ◦   Events
    ◦   Paid


   Capture the right information

We’ll also talk about how non-advocacy
focused organizations can acquire advocates
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
90,000
letters
mailed
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
   If you can find high quality lists – paid
    acquisition of advocates can pay off

   Multiple benefits
    ◦   list growth
    ◦   prospect recruitment
    ◦   branding
    ◦   advocacy
   Care2, change.org
   Facebook ads
   Google ads/adwords
   Email list rental
   Online display advertising
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
   At least get:
    ◦ First Name, Last Name      Can at least do an append on
    ◦ Email +permission          this data for address/phone
                                 (US only)
    ◦ Zip

   Try for
    ◦ Phone (make it optional)
    ◦ Full address
   Advocacy has a fairly wide definition. It can be a
    non-political engagement activity too, e.g.:

    ◦ Pledges
    ◦ Messages of support
    ◦ Thank you’s



   It does not mean you need to re-characterize
    your organization if you are a 501(c)(3) or
    registered charity
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
   Ask early in the relationship

   Tie your ask to the advocacy action, ideally

   Ask for a lower donation amount if advocate
    doesn’t respond to traditional ask amount

   Ask through multiple channels
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
   Option 1: Ask immediately
    ◦ Take Action  Tell a Friend  Donate
    ◦ Take Action  Donate
    ◦ Take Action  Choice of options




                           27
28
29
30
31
   Option 1: Ask immediately
    ◦ Take Action  Tell a Friend  Donate
    ◦ Take Action  Donate
    ◦ Take Action  Choice of options




                           32
33
34
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
   Option 1: Ask immediately
    ◦ Take Action  Tell a Friend  Donate
    ◦ Take Action  Donate
    ◦ Take Action  Choice of options




                           37
$6,415 came from the
thank you page and
email

12% of total campaign
revenue!

1.85% conversion rate

$30.99 average gift
(ask was $25)
   Option 2: Ask within days
    ◦ Email Welcome Series
       Generic
       Tailored to the action they joined on
    ◦ Follow-up Action
      Take 2nd Action  Donate
    ◦ Follow-up Appeal
      The one-timemonthly one-two punch



                            39
40
41
42
   Option 2: Ask within days
    ◦ Email Welcome Series
      Generic
      Tailored to the action they joined on
    ◦ Follow-up Action
      Take 2nd Action  Donate
    ◦ Follow-up Appeal
      The one-timemonthly one-two punch




                              43
   Option 2: Ask within days
    ◦ Email Welcome Series
      Generic
      Tailored to the action they joined on
    ◦ Follow-up Action
      Take 2nd Action  Donate
    ◦ Follow-up Appeal
      The one-timemonthly one-two punch




                              44
45
46
Group 1
                                    Day 12
                                  Monthly ask


 DAY 2       DAY 5       DAY 10    Group 2
Welcome      Action      Survey     Day 18
 email    number 2 +      email   Monthly ask
          donation ask


                                   Group 3
                                    Day 25
                                  Monthly ask
%        %
 List     Users   Donors Sustainers
Group 1   3092    0.36%    0.16%
Group 2   3097    0.29%    0.06%
Group 3   3088    0.29%      0%
TOTAL     9277    0.31%    0.11%
   Serve as an engagement device
   Help you understand the
    motivation/demographic of the audience
    ◦ Collect more information
   Serve as a great springboard to ask for
    donations
   Ask early in the relationship

   Tie your ask to the advocacy action, ideally

   Ask for a lower donation amount if advocate
    doesn’t respond to traditional ask amount

   Ask through multiple channels
   For large buckets of newly acquired advocates,
    try a dedicated welcome series based on the
    issue they joined on
    ◦ Can include monthly giving, one-time giving, micro-
      donation asks, and peer to peer invitations

   Group advocates into issue-oriented groups, and
    segment your appeals to drive response over
    time

   Use transitional language to move advocates into
    your “regular” communication/appeal stream

                              51
   For large buckets of newly acquired advocates,
    try a dedicated welcome series based on the
    issue they joined on
    ◦ Can include monthly giving, one-time giving, micro-
      donation asks, and peer to peer invitations

   Group advocates into issue-oriented groups, and
    segment your appeals to drive response over
    time

   Use transitional language to move advocates into
    your “regular” communication/appeal stream

                              52
   Sent to 192,000 “horse responders”
    ◦ This group includes all who have taken action on
      horse-related issues
   Content focused on wildfires’ impact on
    horses




                            53
54
   Results:
    ◦ Sent to 192,000
    ◦ Open rate: 25.3%
      Average disaster appeal open rate: 8.5-12.5%
    ◦ Donation rate: 0.66%
      Average disaster appeal donation rate: 0.04-0.05%
    ◦ Raised $94,000 from 1,413 donors




                             55
   For large buckets of newly acquired advocates,
    try a dedicated welcome series based on the
    issue they joined on
    ◦ Can include monthly giving, one-time giving, micro-
      donation asks, and peer to peer invitations

   Group advocates into issue-oriented groups, and
    segment your appeals to drive response over
    time

   Use transitional language to move advocates into
    your “regular” communication/appeal stream

                              56
   Example for people who joined through our
    Spay Day photo contest:

    ◦ “Thank you for participating in the Spay Day Pet
      Photo Contest! We are thrilled that you have chosen
      to join our community - here's how you can help
      more animals today.”




                            57
   Ask early in the relationship

   Tie your ask to the advocacy action, ideally

   Ask for a lower donation amount if advocate
    doesn’t respond to traditional ask amount

   Ask through multiple channels
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
   Three emails sent to 1.04 million advocates
    who had not donated in previous 24 months
   3,380 donations totaling $141,500
    ◦ Avg. gift > $40
    ◦ Gift range $5 - $500
    ◦ Donation participation rate:
   Ask early in the relationship

   Tie your ask to the advocacy action, ideally

   Ask for a lower donation amount if advocate
    doesn’t respond to traditional ask amount

   Ask through multiple channels
What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy
   Email and web asks can get you so far...

   To secure higher rates of conversion, bring
    other channels into the mix

   These usually perform much better than
    prospecting files
3.24% direct mail response rate
$59 direct mail average gift
Average response on prospecting packages 0.30%
66
   If you are testing advocate lists in direct mail,
    pick segments that have:
    ◦ Voluntarily given a full address
    ◦ Taken additional action (e.g., made comments)
    ◦ Have taken action recently
   Best way to secure monthly gifts

   Can cost-effectively link scripts with online
    behavior

   Can cost-effectively link calling windows with
    online outreach

   Can convert advocates who haven’t made a
    donation online
   Up-front costs

   External vendor(s) plus staff time to hire,
    manage

   Training of call center staff or volunteers

   Technology (donation processing, managing
    data)
                          69
   Email welcome series followed by phone call
      6-8 weeks after action


Monthly      Avg.      OTG      Avg.   Cost per
Response     Monthly   Response Gift   Monthly
Rate         Gift      Rate
4.6%         $16.40    2.5%     $34.40 $296
Costs per monthly donor (primarily DRTV
driven) :

1998 - $80             2008 - $300
18.50%
20%
18%
                                Recent Lapsed Monthly
16%
                                Donor
14%                       11%   Online Petition Only
12%
                    9%
               8%               E-newsletter Subscriber
10%
8%
                                Long Lapsed Montlhly
6%                              Donor
4%
2%
0%
                         72
   1000 phone calls – 74 monthly donors giving
    $9.66 every month




                       73
   Goal: Convert online one-time donors and
    advocate non-donors into monthly sustainers
   Process:
    ◦ Newly acquired online names were first invited by
      email to become monthly donors
    ◦ Then we called them. Callers were segmented by
      the campaign on which they joined




                            74
RESULTS

Campaign             # Contacted   % Converted   Breakeven Point
                                                 (in months)

Factory Farming          309          14.2%             5.8

Animal Fighting         1,028         11.3%             7.6

Seals/Fur                558          16.4%             6.5

Puppy Mills              946          18.0%             5.6

All Issues/General      9,043          9.2%             9.6
   Conversion doesn’t always happen right away
   Key is to keep them active with ongoing
    communication
   When acquiring advocates:
    ◦ Collect enough information
    ◦ Acquire in multiple ways
    ◦ Remember: Advocacy does not always need to be
      political/policy oriented




                          77
   Ask quickly
    ◦ Make the ask part of the action
    ◦ Make it high profile
    ◦ Follow up with an email welcome series with an ask
      as part of the emails




                            78
   Relate the ask to the action
    ◦ What brought this person to you? So what might
      motivate them to give?




                           79
   When using direct mail to convert:
    ◦ Integrate with advocacy
    ◦ Test a campaign update
    ◦ Mail as soon as possible after the advocacy action




                            80
   When using telemarketing to convert:
    ◦ Push for monthly giving
    ◦ Refine your scripts with your best lists
    ◦ Call people as soon as possible after the advocacy
      action




                            81
Don’t forget to visit the
   Solutions Showcase!
Many of the ideas discussed today are
on display at the Solutions Showcase!

                              #bridgeconf

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What's hiding behind your petition? Finding donors through advocacy

  • 1. Geoff Handy, Humane Society of the United States Sheetal Persaud, hjc #bridgeconf
  • 2. Why advocacy is powerful for fundraising  Strategies for: ◦ Recruiting and cultivating advocates ◦ Converting advocates into donors
  • 4. Non-donors who’d taken action online were 2.3x more likely to donate than non-donors in the email file who hadn’t 4
  • 5. Source: Charitable Memberships, Volunteering and Discounts: Evidence from a Large-Scale Online Field Experiment. May 2009, National Bureau of Economic Research, A. Lange, A. Stocking. 5
  • 6. “Advocates will donate. Donors will take action.”
  • 7. All HSUS Online Donors Have acted 62% Have not 38%
  • 8. Have acted 85% Have not 15%
  • 9. Both are valid ways to help any cause  Advocacy actions, and advocacy victories, “prime the pump” for appeals ◦ They tie mission and giving together ◦ They enable the motivated advocate to take another step 9
  • 12. Test various channels and strategies ◦ Organic (e.g., tell a friend) ◦ Social media and mobile ◦ Events ◦ Paid  Capture the right information We’ll also talk about how non-advocacy focused organizations can acquire advocates
  • 17. If you can find high quality lists – paid acquisition of advocates can pay off  Multiple benefits ◦ list growth ◦ prospect recruitment ◦ branding ◦ advocacy
  • 18. Care2, change.org  Facebook ads  Google ads/adwords  Email list rental  Online display advertising
  • 20. At least get: ◦ First Name, Last Name Can at least do an append on ◦ Email +permission this data for address/phone (US only) ◦ Zip  Try for ◦ Phone (make it optional) ◦ Full address
  • 21. Advocacy has a fairly wide definition. It can be a non-political engagement activity too, e.g.: ◦ Pledges ◦ Messages of support ◦ Thank you’s  It does not mean you need to re-characterize your organization if you are a 501(c)(3) or registered charity
  • 25. Ask early in the relationship  Tie your ask to the advocacy action, ideally  Ask for a lower donation amount if advocate doesn’t respond to traditional ask amount  Ask through multiple channels
  • 27. Option 1: Ask immediately ◦ Take Action  Tell a Friend  Donate ◦ Take Action  Donate ◦ Take Action  Choice of options 27
  • 28. 28
  • 29. 29
  • 30. 30
  • 31. 31
  • 32. Option 1: Ask immediately ◦ Take Action  Tell a Friend  Donate ◦ Take Action  Donate ◦ Take Action  Choice of options 32
  • 33. 33
  • 34. 34
  • 37. Option 1: Ask immediately ◦ Take Action  Tell a Friend  Donate ◦ Take Action  Donate ◦ Take Action  Choice of options 37
  • 38. $6,415 came from the thank you page and email 12% of total campaign revenue! 1.85% conversion rate $30.99 average gift (ask was $25)
  • 39. Option 2: Ask within days ◦ Email Welcome Series  Generic  Tailored to the action they joined on ◦ Follow-up Action  Take 2nd Action  Donate ◦ Follow-up Appeal  The one-timemonthly one-two punch 39
  • 40. 40
  • 41. 41
  • 42. 42
  • 43. Option 2: Ask within days ◦ Email Welcome Series  Generic  Tailored to the action they joined on ◦ Follow-up Action  Take 2nd Action  Donate ◦ Follow-up Appeal  The one-timemonthly one-two punch 43
  • 44. Option 2: Ask within days ◦ Email Welcome Series  Generic  Tailored to the action they joined on ◦ Follow-up Action  Take 2nd Action  Donate ◦ Follow-up Appeal  The one-timemonthly one-two punch 44
  • 45. 45
  • 46. 46
  • 47. Group 1 Day 12 Monthly ask DAY 2 DAY 5 DAY 10 Group 2 Welcome Action Survey Day 18 email number 2 + email Monthly ask donation ask Group 3 Day 25 Monthly ask
  • 48. % % List Users Donors Sustainers Group 1 3092 0.36% 0.16% Group 2 3097 0.29% 0.06% Group 3 3088 0.29% 0% TOTAL 9277 0.31% 0.11%
  • 49. Serve as an engagement device  Help you understand the motivation/demographic of the audience ◦ Collect more information  Serve as a great springboard to ask for donations
  • 50. Ask early in the relationship  Tie your ask to the advocacy action, ideally  Ask for a lower donation amount if advocate doesn’t respond to traditional ask amount  Ask through multiple channels
  • 51. For large buckets of newly acquired advocates, try a dedicated welcome series based on the issue they joined on ◦ Can include monthly giving, one-time giving, micro- donation asks, and peer to peer invitations  Group advocates into issue-oriented groups, and segment your appeals to drive response over time  Use transitional language to move advocates into your “regular” communication/appeal stream 51
  • 52. For large buckets of newly acquired advocates, try a dedicated welcome series based on the issue they joined on ◦ Can include monthly giving, one-time giving, micro- donation asks, and peer to peer invitations  Group advocates into issue-oriented groups, and segment your appeals to drive response over time  Use transitional language to move advocates into your “regular” communication/appeal stream 52
  • 53. Sent to 192,000 “horse responders” ◦ This group includes all who have taken action on horse-related issues  Content focused on wildfires’ impact on horses 53
  • 54. 54
  • 55. Results: ◦ Sent to 192,000 ◦ Open rate: 25.3%  Average disaster appeal open rate: 8.5-12.5% ◦ Donation rate: 0.66%  Average disaster appeal donation rate: 0.04-0.05% ◦ Raised $94,000 from 1,413 donors 55
  • 56. For large buckets of newly acquired advocates, try a dedicated welcome series based on the issue they joined on ◦ Can include monthly giving, one-time giving, micro- donation asks, and peer to peer invitations  Group advocates into issue-oriented groups, and segment your appeals to drive response over time  Use transitional language to move advocates into your “regular” communication/appeal stream 56
  • 57. Example for people who joined through our Spay Day photo contest: ◦ “Thank you for participating in the Spay Day Pet Photo Contest! We are thrilled that you have chosen to join our community - here's how you can help more animals today.” 57
  • 58. Ask early in the relationship  Tie your ask to the advocacy action, ideally  Ask for a lower donation amount if advocate doesn’t respond to traditional ask amount  Ask through multiple channels
  • 61. Three emails sent to 1.04 million advocates who had not donated in previous 24 months  3,380 donations totaling $141,500 ◦ Avg. gift > $40 ◦ Gift range $5 - $500 ◦ Donation participation rate:
  • 62. Ask early in the relationship  Tie your ask to the advocacy action, ideally  Ask for a lower donation amount if advocate doesn’t respond to traditional ask amount  Ask through multiple channels
  • 64. Email and web asks can get you so far...  To secure higher rates of conversion, bring other channels into the mix  These usually perform much better than prospecting files
  • 65. 3.24% direct mail response rate $59 direct mail average gift Average response on prospecting packages 0.30%
  • 66. 66
  • 67. If you are testing advocate lists in direct mail, pick segments that have: ◦ Voluntarily given a full address ◦ Taken additional action (e.g., made comments) ◦ Have taken action recently
  • 68. Best way to secure monthly gifts  Can cost-effectively link scripts with online behavior  Can cost-effectively link calling windows with online outreach  Can convert advocates who haven’t made a donation online
  • 69. Up-front costs  External vendor(s) plus staff time to hire, manage  Training of call center staff or volunteers  Technology (donation processing, managing data) 69
  • 70. Email welcome series followed by phone call 6-8 weeks after action Monthly Avg. OTG Avg. Cost per Response Monthly Response Gift Monthly Rate Gift Rate 4.6% $16.40 2.5% $34.40 $296
  • 71. Costs per monthly donor (primarily DRTV driven) : 1998 - $80 2008 - $300
  • 72. 18.50% 20% 18% Recent Lapsed Monthly 16% Donor 14% 11% Online Petition Only 12% 9% 8% E-newsletter Subscriber 10% 8% Long Lapsed Montlhly 6% Donor 4% 2% 0% 72
  • 73. 1000 phone calls – 74 monthly donors giving $9.66 every month 73
  • 74. Goal: Convert online one-time donors and advocate non-donors into monthly sustainers  Process: ◦ Newly acquired online names were first invited by email to become monthly donors ◦ Then we called them. Callers were segmented by the campaign on which they joined 74
  • 75. RESULTS Campaign # Contacted % Converted Breakeven Point (in months) Factory Farming 309 14.2% 5.8 Animal Fighting 1,028 11.3% 7.6 Seals/Fur 558 16.4% 6.5 Puppy Mills 946 18.0% 5.6 All Issues/General 9,043 9.2% 9.6
  • 76. Conversion doesn’t always happen right away  Key is to keep them active with ongoing communication
  • 77. When acquiring advocates: ◦ Collect enough information ◦ Acquire in multiple ways ◦ Remember: Advocacy does not always need to be political/policy oriented 77
  • 78. Ask quickly ◦ Make the ask part of the action ◦ Make it high profile ◦ Follow up with an email welcome series with an ask as part of the emails 78
  • 79. Relate the ask to the action ◦ What brought this person to you? So what might motivate them to give? 79
  • 80. When using direct mail to convert: ◦ Integrate with advocacy ◦ Test a campaign update ◦ Mail as soon as possible after the advocacy action 80
  • 81. When using telemarketing to convert: ◦ Push for monthly giving ◦ Refine your scripts with your best lists ◦ Call people as soon as possible after the advocacy action 81
  • 82. Don’t forget to visit the Solutions Showcase! Many of the ideas discussed today are on display at the Solutions Showcase! #bridgeconf