The Mikuska Group  

New offering: Donor-focused communications course

We’re pleased to offer in-house training for social impact organizations to learn about effective, donor-focused communications, with the goal of reaching and retaining more donors. The course is for employees with responsibilities in fundraising and communications, or for those wanting to move into those types of positions.

Donors respond better to communications that are focused on them rather than on how great an organization is. The course is designed to learn about how best to talk and write to donors and to put those principles into practice, both for the students and for others in the organization. Students will also learn about the importance of storytelling and will use tools to speak to program staff about gathering stories of impact for donors.

It’s critical to engage donors and earn their loyalty, as it is much more cost-effective to keep donors than to continuous try to acquire new donors. The Fundraising Effectiveness Project through AFP shows that for 2013-14:

  • every $100 gained in 2014 was offset by $95 in losses through gift attrition. That is, 95 percent of gains in giving were offset by losses in giving for a net gain in gifts of 5 percent.
  • every 100 donors gained in 2014 was offset by 103 in lost donors through attrition. That is, 103 percent of the donors gained were offset by lapsed donors for a net loss in donors of -3 percent.
  • The donor retention rate was 43 percent. That is, only 43 percent of donors who gave in 2013 gave again in 2014.
  • The gift retention rate was 47 percent. That is, only 47 percent of 2013 dollars were raised again in 2014.

Employers are eligible to apply for the Canada-Manitoba Jobs Grant that will cover two-thirds of the cost of the course.

Students will learn about donor-focused communications through:

  • Reading assigned text books
  • Seminars
  • Viewing and discussing assigned videos
  • Completing assignments individually or in group work on:
    • Writing the case for support
    • Writing and producing the donor newsletter
    • Writing and producing annual appeal letters
    • Speaking with program staff about the importance of stories in donor communications

Interested? Contact us for more information.



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