- Year of publication
Rapidata, part of The Access Group, surveyed 87 charities of different sizes and supporting a range of causes on how they have adapted their communications to the Covid-19 crisis, for its report Navigating Times of Crisis to Protect Regular Giving.
The UK’s lockdown came into effect 16th March 2020, halting face to-face fundraising, events and other income generating activities for charities. With people’s finances and job security on the line, regular giving behaviour began to change. The Direct Debit cancellations rate jumped to 3.09% – the biggest swing from February to March ever recorded – and supporter acquisition declined.
While cancellation rates returned to their usual level in April, new supporter sign-ups remained low, with less than half the number of regular supporters recruited than during the same month in 2019.
In the charity survey, Rapidata asked charities what actions they took within the limits of lockdown to protect and grow regular giving:
67% of respondents changed how they communicate with regular givers. Many increased their focus on stewardship, turning to digital channels and the telephone to thank supporters and reinvigorate relationships.
Some pre-empted cancellations by offering payment options such as skip, holiday or reduced gift
Use of digital skyrocketed. Social media and email saw the biggest increases, then online advertising and online virtual events.
Social media, additional impact reporting and thank you mailings were the top three activities used to tackle attrition.
The most successful channels recruiting supporters during lockdown were social media, email and online advertising, while the top three channels for stewardship were email, direct mail, and telephone.
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