In recent blog posts, we’ve been discussing tips for running a successful recurring giving campaign and providing examples of recurring giving campaigns that can hopefully help spark ideas on how you can run your own.
This is because we’ve seen recurring giving work really well on our platform, both for the organization and for the donors. With recurring campaigns, there’s a higher tendency for donor retention by making it easy for donors to contribute to your nonprofit regularly, while also helping organizations raise up to 42% more per donor over the course of a year.
With all this data, it makes running a recurring giving campaign almost a no-brainer, but we also realize that time and energy are demanded with every campaign you run.
Which is why we want to highlight how easy it is to setup a recurring giving campaign and put it into action.
Here’s how you can launch a recurring giving campaign on CauseVox.
1) Create An Aptly Named Campaign
Every good campaign starts off with a good name, and recurring campaigns are no different.
From the get-go, ensure your campaign title includes a long-term focus, so that donors have an inkling of what to expect from the campaign the moment they see it.
While some campaigns choose to include “Monthly Giving” or “Recurring” in the title, it’s always interesting to get creative with introducing the concept of a recurring giving campaign.
In my example below, the Paint Schools Pink: School-Year Edition, immediately tells the donor that they’re looking at a campaign focused on securing funding for the rest of the school year.
2) Ensure You Have A Stripe Account Connected
On a more practical note, CauseVox only supports recurring giving with Stripe, a donation processor.
Stripe has many benefits, including making it easier for donors to contribute than with PayPal and transfers funds automatically into your bank account on a two day rolling basis- perfect for a campaign that’s goal is, in part, to make it easier for donors to contribute and make it even easier for you to receive funds.
But overall, we’ve found Stripe’s recurring functionality a better experience for donors, so it’s the solution we offer to our users.
To get your recurring campaign up and running, you’ll want to ensure that you set up a Stripe account and then turn on Recurring Donations. You’ll have to sign into Stripe to complete the Recurring Donation setup process.
3) Prominently Feature Your Campaign’s Recurring Focus
You could have a great recurring campaign title and have recurring donations set up, but that’s not really what makes it an effective recurring campaign.
It’s how you communicate it to your donors.
For that purpose, it’s in your best interest to prominently feature recurring giving on your campaign. I’ve seen this done really well on Melanie Gleason’s Attorney on the Move campaign, which has raised about $20,000, overwhelmingly from recurring donations.
One of the best things about her campaign setup is that she designated the entire Sidebar of her page to focus specifically on the impact benefits of becoming a monthly partner.
When creating your own recurring campaign, find a prominent spot on your page to feature your recurring campaign and include details about what the added benefits of giving monthly entail.
On a more practical note, Sustainable Cambodia’s recurring campaign included instructions in a large font on the page on how to give monthly.
By including instructions on how to make a recurring donation on CauseVox, you’re helping direct your donors and ensure your donors easily make their donations recurring.
4) Use Language Throughout Your Appeal That Drives People To Give Long-Term
On many campaigns, there’s a short term focus in the fundraising appeal, meaning that it’s cast in a light such as when you raise X in the next 30 days or so, you’ll have what you need to solve your goal.
When writing a recurring fundraising appeal, however, you’ll want to help the donor understand the problem your organization is looking to solve in the long term. Be sure to emphasize the ongoing support your organization needs to make the impact you desire.
In addition, since you’re recurring donors will end up giving more than most donors over the year, as an added incentive, try giving them a special title and privilege to special updates.
In Melanie’s Attourney On The Move page, she repeatedly refers to her recurring donors as partners, and in her call to action emphasizes that she’s “grateful to be in community with [donors] this week, month, and in the year ahead.”
In that one statement, she invites her donors not only to give monthly, but enter into community with her over the next year during her journey.
By making recurring donors feel like they have a special bond with your nonprofit, you’re incentivizing monthly giving and increasing the likelihood that they’ll choose to be a recurring donor.
5) Create Donation Tiers With A Monthly Approach
Previously, I’ve noted that how you communicate impact with your donation tiers can drive donations. And with a recurring campaign, how you write your donation tiers can drive donors to make their donation recurring.
When creating your donation tiers, consider how much you would need each month to accomplish your impact goal. Then, break this into varying donation levels in terms of monthly donations.
By structuring your donation tiers with a monthly mindset, it helps donors understand what the impact of their monthly gift will make, and even helps communicate further why they should make their donation monthly.
Even a small monthly gift can make a huge impact, so by communicating that to donors, they’re more likely to choose to make their donation monthly recurring, and potentially even choose higher amounts.
6) Email Out Your Recurring Giving Campaign To The Right People
One particular key to acing a recurring campaign is determined by who you promote the campaign to specifically.
While it’s possible that someone will learn about you for the first time, and then decide to make a monthly donation, it’s unlikely
However, recurring giving campaigns offer you a huge opportunity to engage existing donors.
Think about it- someone has just made their first donation to your cause- and then what? How do they connect further with your organization? What next step can you present to them to ensure they’re retained?
A recurring giving campaign is a perfect call to action for donors that have given before, but aren’t yet consistently engaged with your nonprofit.
By targeting your existing donors, you’re developing a relationship with that donor and retaining them at the same time.
Plus, by focusing a majority of your efforts on recruiting existing donors to become recurring donors, you’re able to send really targeted messaging that’s more likely to convert and taking off the pressure on the marketing team to engage ‘everyone.’
By following these 6 tips for launching a recurring giving campaign, you’ll be equipped to run a recurring giving campaign with ease. With the benefits recurring giving offers, which include increasing donor retention, increasing the amount given by donor, and helping secure sustainable funds year round for your nonprofit, recurring giving is worth a try.