Raising Nonprofits Donations by Offering Branded Gifts

Type writer displaying white sheet of paper with Donations written in bold.

Exploring nonprofits mission to raise money and how offering tiered donations with special branded gifts depending on the donation size is a great way to encourage donations while increasing brand awareness.

The Donation Challenge Nonprofits Face:

All nonprofit organizations routinely face the challenge of consistently retaining donations from benefactors and gaining new supporters. Retention and acquisition. These terms are not exclusive to nonprofits. All businesses are working to maintain old customers and acquire new ones, but the strategies available to nonprofits vs. for-profit companies are uniquely different.

A nonprofit doesn’t put products on sale or run flash deals. They rely on the willingness of others to graciously support the mission, but that doesn’t mean their contributions have to be selflessly motivated. In fact, there is a strategy nonprofits can use to boost donations and maintain their past contributors that leverages incentives like the flash deals and “free-shipping”  sales for-profit businesses employ, and that’s using a tiered reward system of promotional items.

The Solution: A Tiered Reward System of Promotional Items

neon pink sign saying "don't just take, give."

A brand that often employs a tiered reward system is American Eagle. They run promotional periods where a purchase of X amount grants you a free branded gift. Often that free gift is a branded tote bag. Buyers try to add enough items to their cart to qualify for the free gift, thus spending more than they intended to get the tote.

Nonprofits can implement the same strategy to bolster donations. A donation of $100 awards you a branded thermos, perhaps, and suddenly there are more people interested in donating because they’re getting something in return. This helps your organization additionally by increasing your brand awareness. Now your donors have a mug they bring to the office or travel with, and your brand is getting seen by more potential donors that are likely within the same target market as your original donor because it’s their friends and family who are seeing your thermos.

What typically also happens is donors who were considering giving an amount near the target amount to qualify for the promotional product bump up their donation just to get the mug. So someone who would have given less is now giving more.

Maximize Donations to Your Nonprofit

man holding credit card up as he types the numbers into his computer.

To truly maximize this strategy, it’s best to offer multiple tiers of rewards that increase in quality, quantity, or rarity as the donation amount increases. So it may be $100 to receive the mug but to receive the mug, frother and metal straw, the donation amount must be at least $130. You can also change the reward entirely to something of much higher value to raise your minimum donation amount. A branded Nike ¼ zip, perhaps, is awarded to donations exceeding $250. These are all arbitrary numbers, of course, but they illustrate how the reward can dictate the qualifying amount and incentivize donors to give more than they initially intended or encourage donors to give when they otherwise wouldn’t have.

The Takeaway

When building your tiered promotional product strategy, consider these elements for your product selections: Quality, quantity and rarity. As the amounts increase, you either want to increase the package of rewards or the quality of the reward. Rarer items should be saved for your highest-tiered donations, and often plaques donors can hang in their offices or workspaces serve well.

Perpetuate the concept of giving by giving back to your donors. Using this strategy, your organization will emulate the actions you’re hoping your supporter take while incentivizing them to give.

Velocity Can Help With Branded Gifts

The marketing experts at Velocity are ready to help with your next donation campaign. Working from concept to completion our team is able to provide guidance on branded gift ideas, and the structure of giveaways to maximize donations. Speak with a representative today:

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