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How to Re-Engage Lapsed Donors in Your Organization

How to Re-Engage Lapsed Donors in Your Organization

A lapsed donor is one who has lapsed from giving for at least a calendar year. They are the most significant donors to focus your efforts on re-engaging since they have already demonstrated an interest in your organization.

There are several ways to re-engage these lapsed donors. Here are some suggestions that you can pick and choose from to implement within your organization.

  1. Identify those donors who gave last year and yet have to donate this year. Those are your lapsed donors.
  2. Add up the total giving from these lapsed donors. Surely after seeing this number, you will want to spend some time trying to recapture them.
  3. Segment out the major donors from this list. A major donor giving level will vary from organization to organization i.e. $250, $500, $1,000, or even more.
  4. Share this list with your Development Committee of the Board and discuss the plan of action.
  5. Have Board members identify those that they can personally call on.
  6. Intend to call on these donors either through personal visits or telephone to secure a gift commitment.
  7. Plan to send a specialized segmented direct mail letter to all others not identified as major donors.

You could also use this same strategy for each appeal that you send out to be proactively trying to prevent lapsing from occurring in the first place.

For more a of strategy on how to do this, visit this link here. And, for a sample copy of a lapsing donor direct mail appeal letter, email me here.

Robin Cabral is “Hire a CFRE!” the one and only outsourced development professional with close to twenty-five years experience providing value-added consulting services with razor-sharp monthly result objectives and benchmarked deliverables.

She works with mid-sized nonprofits that want to position themselves to build capacity and generate MORE fundraising prospects, BETTER donor relationships, and BIGGER fundraising dollars. Find out more at

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