Cygnus Applied Research is releasing its 2011 Donor Survey this week. The 2011 Cygnus Donor Survey was conducted between February 7th and March 6th. Approximately 552,000 donors who made one or more gifts in 2010 and/or 2009 were invited to complete an online questionnaire. Over 22,000 donors responded from all over North America, including 17,605 from the United States. 83% of American donors who started the survey answered all questions, for a completion rate of 83%. The margin of error in this study is +/- 0.8%, nineteen times out of twenty.
Donors prefer online communication to print.
According to the survey, 69% of donors of all ages now prefer electronic over print communication.
Donors are increasingly favoring online donations.
Donors in every age category said they’d give online this year; 86% of young donors, 69% of donors between 35 and 64 and 53% of donors over 65. 26% said they plan to give less thru the mail this year, while 1% said they were going to give more via the mail. Also, according to the survey, 2011 will be the first year when a majority of donors in every age category will make at least one gift online.
31% of donors who prioritize giving online over other methods said that multiple forms of solicitation will not cause them to give more often or more generously, and an additional 49% said that soliciting them in ways other than online will actually persuade them to give less or stop giving altogether.
Donors are becoming more concerned about fundraising costs.
Cost-effectiveness is a major reason why online donors prefer online.
Negative response to token gifts.
77% of respondents have recent experience (within the last two years) receiving token gifts. The overwhelming response was negative to questions concerning whether donors appreciated premiums. As well, 63% said they do not want to receive token gifts of any kind so that as much of their gift as possible goes to the purpose for which they gave.
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