How healthy is your database?

30 March 2020

When it comes to personal health and well-being we are all familiar with the most important statistics: temperature, blood pressure, heartbeat, weight, BMI, cholesterol and blood sugar level. Just like it is important to monitor these health indicators for yourself, it is also crucial to have access to those vital functions that indicate whether your donor base is healthy or might need CPR.

Technology offers fundraisers the possibility to keep track of important statistics quickly and cheaply. Statistics and vital functions of direct mail, telemarketing, street recruitment, social media and other measurable channels. 

Thanks to our experience with helping hundreds of organisation DonorTrends has developed the skill to discern what makes every organisation a little bit different in terms of culture and operational method. But regardless of the organisational culture there is one thing that applies to any organisation:

Every fundraiser needs fundamental knowledge about the donor base and the resulting income flow.

Without these important statistics there is no way to plan, follow or lead a fundraising programme. We believe you have the right to know and understand the answers on these crucial questions. Do not panic if you don’t know where to start. We are here to help!


Every fundraiser should ask himself these seven questions:

  1. Is my donor base growing or shrinking?
  2. How loyal are my existing donors?
  3. How loyal are my new donors?
  4. How much is my donor worth after 5 years?
  5. How does my gross revenue develop per year?
  6. How much does a donor bring in on average per year?
  7. What can I do to monitor and improve my retention in order to raise my revenue?

All fundraisers need A.I. (Action-based Intelligence) that can be used to increase the net income. However, this “intelligence” (data) needs to be collected without running the risk of “analysis paralysis” (overanalysing).

The process starts with benchmarking, setting up a starting point from which progress can be measured and evaluated. Unfortunately, not all benchmarks are classified or set up according to the same definitions. Even the most meaningful benchmarks are only useful if the fundraiser understands what the numbers mean, how they are calculated and, most of all, how they can be influenced.

Quick ‘health check’ available

With a MAAP, Master Audit & Action Plan, your database will be analysed within a few days with special attention to:

  • Change in gross revenue (over 5 years)
  • Growth or decline in the database
  • Reactivation percentages
  • Retention (first year and following years)
  • Lifetime value

Health check

What are the vital functions? What does my data has to offer?

A MAAP can also offer insight into:

  • The potency of your donors to be upgraded to Middle or High Donors.
  • Which donors can be reactivated to an active status.
  • Who may possibly leave a legacy to your organisation.
  • Which donors can be addressed more frequently. And which donors less frequently. In this time, in which a lot of organisations address people regularly to ask for donations to support crucial projects, it can be advisable to use AI in order to decide which donors are worth addressing more often.

All these ‘vital functions’ are crucial to make a diagnosis: does your database offer you a lot of possibilities or a lot of problems? Get your own ‘health check’ by filling in our contact form.

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