5 Unique Ways to Thank Recurring Donors

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By Hannah Durbin
Published May 3, 2021
Reading Time: 5 minutes

Any supporter who chooses to make a recurring donation to your nonprofit—whether it’s once a month, once a quarter, or once a year—is demonstrating their ongoing commitment to your mission in a way that should be recognized. 

Finding special ways to thank donors for their recurring donations is crucial to a strong stewardship strategy, but identifying perks or incentives that truly excite your donors can be challenging. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of five recurring giving programs with unique incentives to inspire your creative thinking.

1. Haymakers for Hope: Haymakers Harriers

screengrab of recurring giving page

Haymakers for Hope’s mission is to give everyday people the chance to fight back against cancer by training for, and competing in charity boxing events to raise money and awareness. To elevate their recurring giving program, the team launched “Haymakers Harriers,” a subscription-based running community, to incentivize their supporters to get involved. 

Keeping their community engaged during COVID-19 was a big concern for the organization, so they wanted to offer a unique perk that aligned with their mission, felt authentic, and offered a value their supporters couldn’t get anywhere else.

Their regional fight manager, Brian Schroy, is a registered running coach in pursuit of qualifying for the Olympic Trials in the marathon, so his unique skill set was immediately put to use as a trainer whom recurring donors could connect with in this subscription-based community.

With a minimum $25 donation per month, supporters gain access to:

  • Private running coaching with Brian Schroy
  • Private Strava group with weekly workouts 
  • Slack channel to connect with peers
  • Training plans 
  • Early access to charity races
  • Running swag and discounts to premium running products
  • Webinars from running industry experts 
  • Community meet-ups

takeaway

Frame your program as a subscription-based group with unique, valuable benefits. Consider how you can offer value to your donors for their investment, similar to how they might subscribe to Netflix to access content. 

2. Bright Pink: FundHER

screengrab of recurring giving page

Bright Pink helps save lives from breast and ovarian cancer by empowering women to know their risk and manage their health proactively. By investing monthly in their mission, donors become a part of the FundHER community dedicated to the long-term sustainability of these efforts.

For a monthly gift of $25, donors receive: 

  • A FundHER welcome gift delivered to your door 
  • Quarterly progress reports showing their life-saving gift in action
  • Recognition on the program page 
  • Exclusive early access to events, campaigns, programs, and projects

takeaway

Ensure you’re providing a regular touchpoint with each donor by sending progress reports, campaign highlights, or organizational updates on a weekly, monthly, or quarterly basis.

3. Savory: Become a Regenerating Member

screengrab of recurring giving page

Savory’s mission to facilitate the large-scale regeneration of the world’s grasslands is fueled by the generous support of its donors, and recurring giving has become a crucial source of revenue in their goal to influence the management of 1 billion hectares by 2025.

Savory offers different perks for different giving levels to incentivize and thank donors accordingly. 

For $10 per month, “champion” donors receive:

  • Quarterly webinars
  • Annual meeting with Allan Savory
  • Holistic management online course
  • 25% discount on all Savory products and offerings
  • Access to Network Collaboration Platform
  • Full suite of advocacy materials

For $25 per month, “steward” donors receive:

  • All “champion” benefits 
  • Past conference and webinar recordings
  • 15% off Network partner brands 
  • Invite to annual Savory Network Reunion
  • “Regenerative” T-shirt 

For $50 per month, “changemaker” donors receive:

  • All “champion” and “steward” benefits
  • 1-on-1 meeting with Savory staff
  • Savory belt buckle
  • Signed copy of Alan Savory’s book

takeaway

Break up your incentives based on the size of the recurring gift and offer different perks for higher giving levels. Also, get creative by making your donors feel like they’re a part of your team. Consider inviting your supporters to spend time with your staff and advocates, attend organizational meetings, or register for special networking events. 

4. LoveYourBrain: Building Resilience Project

screengrab of recurring giving page

LoveYourBrain is on a mission to improve the quality of life of people affected by traumatic brain injury (TBI) through programs that build community and foster resilience.

The LoveYourBrain team promotes recurring giving by sending a special meditation by email every month to their monthly donors, which falls perfectly in line with their belief that yoga, mindfulness, and community are essential to transforming the wellbeing of people impacted by TBI.

In addition to a monthly meditation, donors can gain access to additional perks. After 12 months of giving at the following levels, donors will receive:

  • Monthly donations at $28 or more: LoveYourBrain sticker 
  • Monthly donation at $50 or more: special recognition in LoveYourBrain’s Annual Report
  • Monthly donation at $100 or more: special gift 

takeaway

Offer incentives that align with your mission and feel authentic to your organization.  

5. Operation Broken Silence: The Renewal

screengrab of recurring giving page

Operation Broken Silence is the only organization in the world providing support to refugee teachers in Yida Refugee Camp who fled Sudan to escape the genocidal war in 2011. To continue combatting the existing education crisis, the team is working to motivate 150 supporters to become generous monthly givers. 

Operation Broken Silence incentivizes prospective recurring donors by offering:

  • A membership pin
  • Exclusive, early looks at new stories and campaigns 
  • Two free tickets to annual events for donors who give $35 or more

takeaway

Invite your donors to receive early access to events and be the first to know about campaign launches, story updates, or exclusive offers. 

The lifetime value of recurring donors is 440% greater than one-time donors, so finding a unique way to show your appreciation for their commitment and deep engagement with your mission is a must. 

The next time you’re thinking about how to thank your recurring donors, remember:

  • Offer incentives that reflect and support your mission and provide a value that your donors can’t receive anywhere else 
  • Consider subscription-based incentives that bring your community together
  • Motivate donors with different perks for different giving levels

Download The Ultimate Guide to Recurring Giving today for more information about how to create an effective and appealing recurring giving program.


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