How to Turn Your Phonathon Program Around in Four Easy Steps!

March 8, 2017
in Blog, Fundraising, Higher Education
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Recently, there has been controversy over whether or not phonathon programs are an effective solicitation method for annual fund programs. If integrated correctly, these programs can not only significantly improve overall fundraising efforts, but do so without wasting budget dollars. Below are four tips for planning an effective phonathon program.


  1. Be smart when segmenting your list – Instead of prioritizing your list by just donor status, look at all engagement areas and focus on those with the highest propensity to give.  Key areas to examine:
    1. What is their donor status and how often do they give?
    2. Engagement level – are they opening your e-mails or clicking on links?
    3. How many events do they attend each year?
  2. Utilize relevant content whenever possible – Align phonathon callers with prospects that have similar interests and develop relevant talk tracks to build the donor relationship more quickly.
  3. Align calling efforts around direct mail appeals – It has been proven that seeing a message in more than two channels can increase response rates by up to 15%.  Plan your phonathon efforts around the time that your direct mail appeal will hit mailboxes to improve your chances of donor conversion.
  4. Update pledge cards regularly – The worst thing you can do to ruin donor relationships is continue to call them after they make their gift.  Have someone on your staff update the pledge cards regularly to pull out recent donors and avoid irritating them.


By implementing these four simple steps you will be well on your way to a more profitable phonathon program!

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