3 Ways to Maximize Your Loyalty Program

Date Published
Hannah Smith

There are so many avenues for thanking donors these days- email, mail, phone calls, and now of course, text messaging. Not only do you thank donors with words of appreciation, you send them premiums, you mail stickers and keychains, and maybe even take a trip to their home. When all is said and done, perhaps the most valuable way to thank your donors is through a loyalty program, which offers not only a great value for donors, but opportunities for you to retain and upgrade those donors.

Let’s dive into three ways that you may be able to maximize the worth of your loyalty program.

  1. Make the Loyalty Program a clear benefit of membership.
    Whether a donor gives for the feel good feeling, or the mug, a loyalty program goes a long way and drives the point home that they are a valued donor to your organization, and not just a number on a tax receipt. The benefits of said loyalty program must be clearly communicated up front, making it obvious that with your gift, you have access to all the perks of being a donor Highlight this in your newsletter, online, on your pledge page and beyond!

  2. Use the loyalty program as a touch-point throughout the year.
    Find ways to maximize communication through the loyalty program. New donors should receive a welcome series, whether that’s through email, mail, or text message which explains the benefits of this program, while of course expressing your thanks once again. The engagement shouldn’t stop there. Look for opportunities to reach out regarding special features of the program, reminders to utilize the benefits, or a simple reiterated THANKS! And of course, take advantage of the chance to upgrade donors wherever possible.

  3. Set expectations for renewals.
    The purpose of a loyalty program is to keep donors, well, loyal. When they are privy to the benefits your organization’s loyalty program, they should also be aware of the opportunity to renew in order to maintain their status. Benefits should come with expiration dates (hint: renewal dates) and these deadlines should be clearly communicated throughout the year.

When it comes down to it, there is a big difference between a satisfied donor and a loyal donor, so maximize your efforts by keeping these three principles in mind.

About the Author:
Hannah Smith
Group Director, Client Services, Loyalty & Incentives

As the primary contact for our 100+ clients in the Loyalty and Incentives division, Hannah is essentially “the face” of MemberCard and the go-to for questions, comments and ideas. In an account management role like hers, it’s important to not only have a good handle on industry trends and concepts, but it is equally important to get to know all clients on a personal level.

What excites you about your work at AFG?

It’s a great opportunity to meet all sorts of people, as our clients are across the country! I love the interaction and getting to know each of them.

If you weren’t at AFG, what would you be doing?

I wanted to be a mermaid growing up, so maybe working at Atlantis Resort.

What are your hobbies/interests outside of AFG?

I enjoy cooking, reading, watching reality tv, exploring my new city of Providence, and am working on marathon number three!

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