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How animal welfare organizations can target new sustainers

In 2022, animal welfare fundraising was impacted by  inflation challenges and the narrowing of the donor pyramid. In 2023, successful fundraising is all about staying nimble. 

One way we’re pivoting for our clients is by targeting new audiences for sustaining gifts.  

Let’s face it—who doesn’t want more sustainers? They provide a consistent and reliable stream of revenue for organizations. 

Many organizations are used to targeting new or existing donors to convert to monthly givers through digital channels and direct mail. But we’re looking at a few strategies to reach new sustaining audiences in the animal welfare sector.  

New audiences for sustaining gifts 

In addition to targeting existing donors, we’re encouraging our clients to also consider a few new audiences, including:  

  • Past adopters 
  • Event attendees 
  • People who use your clinics 

These audiences have a couple of key attributes that make them the perfect candidates for sustaining gifts. They love animals, and they’ve already shown an affinity for your cause. Even better, you have a wealth of information about them at your fingertips thanks to past interactions with your organization. 

How to reach them 

A multichannel perspective is always best when talking to donors. But these audiences respond especially well to a more personal touch—specifically, telemarketing.  

Building this 1:1 connection with these audiences helps strengthen their connection with your organization, increasing conversion and retention.  

Oregon Humane Society has seen great success reaching adopters through the telephone, and they recently shared their experience in a webinar that we’re partnered on with DVCanvass. We sat down to discuss converting new audiences into sustainers, using telemarketing to reach them and taking a look at the current state of animal welfare fundraising. 

David Miller

As Senior Vice President at RKD Group, David brings more than two decades of animal welfare experience to help organizations craft their fundraising strategies for success. Prior to joining RKD in 2011, David spent 14 years working at animal welfare organizations, including a stint as CEO at Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League.

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