This is a continuing series of 5 Questions for experts from across the nonprofit sector:
5 Questions for Roger Craver
A pioneer in direct mail fundraising in the 60’s…Telemarketing in the ‘70s…Online information services in the ’80…online fundraising in the ’90…Roger Craver continues to push the envelope and challenge conventional thinking through his daily blog The Agitator and with his new firm DonorTrends.
1. What’s the one thing that still dumbfounds you after 45 years in the nonprofit sector?
I’m eternally surprised and not a little confounded by how adverse the sector is to real change and true innovation.
2. Why have you been so tough lately on direct response fundraisers?
For that very reason. So many talk the good game of ‘multi-channel integration’, and others mouth the importance of ‘retention’, but at the end of they day far to many just replicate or tweak last year’s plans and continue doing the same old/same old. I guess they think some force from beyond will magically appear.
3. Which will have the biggest impact on the nonprofit sector: social or mobile?
The two will meld within a very few years along with what we now call online. Virtually every activist, donor, member, alum, you name it, will have a range of engagement options in their pocket or purse and the organizations that have mastered this range of engagements will hit new heights of supporter involvement and rewards.
4. Why is recurring giving so big in the rest of the world but not in the United States?
Largely because of a far more prevalent system of electronic, direct debit banking in most of the developed world except the U.S. It’s coming here too, slowly ever so slowly, and it’s a good thing because a $25 small gift donor who signs up for monthly direct debits has between a 165 and 200 times greater Lifetime Value than typical average direct response donor.
5. 5 years from now we’re all going to look back and say ___________?
“The past sure isn’t what it used to be” and be willing to take the risk and necessary of dealing with the new realities and powerful opportunities of a greatly changed world.
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