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5 Ways Nonprofits Can Engage Donors

Vikas Mittal

Like customers, donors can be segmented by a variety of drivers

A Charity Navigator report showed an estimated $373 billion was given to charitable causes in the U.S. in 2015, with 71% of donations coming from individuals. Individuals donate to a variety of nonprofit causes such as religion (33%), education (16%), human services (12%), health (8%) and public-society benefits (7%).

Melinda Gates, a pioneer of the Giving Pledge initiative, argues: “Philanthropy is different around the world, but almost every culture has a long-standing tradition of giving back.” This statement suggests that people donate not just to give back, but to fulfill multiple motivations. Nonprofits can address five specific motivations to encourage donor engagement.

1. Moral Identity

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Vikas Mittal, Ph.D., is a member of the faculty at the Jones Graduate School of Business at Rice University in Houston, Texas.