[Foundation-l] Fundraising totals as of Oct 7, 2007 @ 5:00 PM (EST)

Brian Brian.Mingus at colorado.edu
Fri Nov 9 03:44:24 UTC 2007

The Cognitive Daily blog performs experiments on their readers every Friday.
They recently held a fundraiser, and didn't achieve their target. They then
asked their readers what the greatest incentive to give more money than they
would otherwise is. They overwhelmingly chose no-limit matching donations.

Among charity marketing strategies in their survey, Internet ads perform
poorly. Adult door to door, child door to door, and friends/family were all
more effective, respectively.


I have personally been very successful in getting friends to donate by
suggestion. Perhaps the Fundraising message should be changed from "If you
and 99 other people donate..." to "If you and your friends and family
donate" or something along those lines, with a link to a form to send an
e-mail. This persuasion method is known as the [[Foot-in-the-door
technique]] (They got to the Fundraising page by first clicking the donation
banner, now what are they willing to further do?) and if framed properly can
be very successful. If we can make it attractive and easy for people to get
their friends and family to donate, the Foundation stands to make a lot of
money, IMO.

Ground based fundraising initiatives are also a good idea. If we can get
Wikimedians to go door to door in their respective cities, we will find a
large number of people who use the encyclopedia and might be willing to
donate. I might be willing to spend a Saturday doing this.

Just some ideas,

On Nov 8, 2007 7:35 PM, Robert Rohde <rarohde at gmail.com> wrote:

> For a bit of perspective, those numbers still aren't great.
> Overall traffic is up 40% since the 2006 fund drive, but after a similar
> number of days, the 2006 fundraiser had slightly more donors[1] and about
> $350,000 more in donations.
> If I understand correctly, much of the extra income was from donation
> matching (including $286,000 from one source), while thus far we don't
> seem
> to have had any donor matching efforts.  Even given that, it is also
> disappointing to see that the number of individual donations hasn't grown
> in
> response to growth in traffic to Wikimedia sites.
> Overall, I'd say that thus far the performance of this drive is poor.  The
> bump from the new banner has kept it from being awful, but we are still
> quite a ways from what I would call good.
> If the Foundation is really serious about a budget of $4.6M for the next
> year (or anything approaching that), then raising only $30k per day isn't
> going to do it.  At that rate, they would need 5 months of fundraising
> even
> with the unrealistic assumption that income wouldn't decline due to donor
> fatigue.
> -Robert Rohde
> [1] I'm excluding the 900 donations of 1 penny.  It appears that 1 or more
> people are systematically donating pennies to pump the donor counter.  A
> similar trend was not present in 2006.
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