One thing (among so many others) that I never understood about nonprofits is why they sell or swap lists with other nonprofits. It’s usually done with low-level donors because nonprofits figure they can afford to lose them.
This strategy could be catastrophic because many low-level donors make great planned giving prospects. And, in fact, many WILL leave their major gift to your organization after their lifetime.
Don’t just take my word for it. In organizations seeking to maximize retention will wish to evaluate the merits of participation in list swop programs. Extant research indicates that lower value donors (who are almost always the focus of such programs) can be just as likely to consider a bequest as other value segments in the database and that once swopped donors will lose around 15% of their subsequent (annual giving) lifetime value. In deciding whether or not to participate in list swops it is therefore not as simple as comparing the immediate return on investment that accrues from the use of this technique as opposed to the use of traditional ‘cold’ lists.”
Folks… stop swapping lists!
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