Generation Y Give

Check out this donor profile:

-Gives to an average of 8 non-profits/charities a year
-Giving includes health, social activism, environment, veterans’, global and local relief, and religious organizations
-Average gift: $50

I bet you are thinking: “Who is this donor and how do I get my clients’/organization’s hands on her?” Trust me you are not the only one. Based on her giving history, this donor ends up on a lot of lists and gets inundated with DM pieces, close to 10 a week.

Want to know how many organizations this donor has given to in the past 2 years because of their DM pieces? None.

How do I know? Because I am that donor.

I am also 26. I also happen to work in direct response marketing. But I also have been giving since I was 16 and could spare a dollar here and there.

Donors like me, I am told over and over again, don’t really exist, or if we do, we exist in the single digits. We are not really worth focusing on in the big scheme of fundraising. The average non-profit file donor is close to a half century older than me. I am an outlier in the DM fundraising world, so I am repeatedly told.

But I just don’t believe that’s true. I believe there are many donors like me out there, or at least many donors with my potential for giving. There are even more donors like me out there who may not be able to give financially, but who would gladly give their time. You just have to get our attention (or that of our friends and peers-word spreads fast when you’re always plugged in), give us a reason, tell us a story that’s compelling for us, our world, that of our friends and families….

I believe in younger donors. I believe we want to give and to get engaged with issues we care about. I believe most of us non-profit marketers haven’t yet really truly understood how to reach these younger donors-going beyond the digi-fad of the day to build a relationship with donors whose own relationships are intervowen with technology and constantly shifting attention spans.

I hope that the thoughts, ideas, and news items I will share on this blog will help further the discussion about the benefits of focusing on this generation as a donor segment for nonprofit organizations, as well as on how to get my generation to open our wallets (or in many of our cases PayPal accounts or Google Wallets), our hearts, and our contact lists.

Please welcome our newest guest contributor, Miriam Kagan. By day (and sometimes night), she is a strategy director at a leading database marketing agency working with non-profit clients. She regularly blogs at Generation Y Give – a blog described as “about why you too should get on the ‘Let’s get Gen Yers’ to Give bandwagon.”