Motivating Millennial Givers With Messaging

Millennials get a bad rap, but they certainly have one thing right: their charitable instincts are strong. A recent survey showed that almost 85% of millennials donated to nonprofits in 2017, mostly on mobile platforms and online. Although those donations may not be worth as much net as those from older generations, given time, millennials will be in higher wealth brackets while ideally maintaining those same giving habits. The challenge for nonprofits will be to identify what motivates this generation of givers and capitalizing on it with the right strategies.

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Regardless of whether someone is Generation Z or a baby boomer, they have to experience the right alchemy of motivation to make a charitable donation. Identifying exactly what that mix is, and capitalizing on it, has been the objective of nearly every charity’s messaging since the 401(c)3 was created. That’s because developing an appeal to someone’s underlying motivators for giving can lead to not only short-term success in a giving campaign, but also longer-term successful relationships between a charity and its contributors.

So how do charities identify and communicate to the motivations of the generous millennial generation? Ironically enough, it seems that what motivates people doesn’t change over time or across generations. The same things that motivated your parents are motivating today’s 20- and 30-year-olds, and apparently the 12-year-olds too: family, friends, recognition, a good song or book, money. Understanding that people just don’t change all that much can be comforting to those of us who might feel bewildered by the endless generation-specific advice out there, but it also makes it harder to identify exactly what makes people tick. Here are some key tips for driving your message to millennial givers:

  • Stay on-trend with seasonal messaging. Like we’ve explored before, taking advantage of current issues and events with relevant content can help your organization stay in the loop of what millennials are talking about right now.
  • Get creative. Never sacrifice your mission for a gimmick, but know that telling your story in an innovative way can help the right people find you and give.
  • Networks matter. Make it easy for people to talk about your organization and what you’re doing to their family and friends–particularly in messaging apps and on social media, where younger generations tend to first connect with non-profits.

Creating a unique sticker pack or custom keyboard for your nonprofit can be a great way to capitalize on all of these possibilities for your organization. By providing opportunities for seasonal customization, incorporating easily into ongoing conversations among networks, and being outside the predictable norm, custom messaging stickers can leverage millennial giving motivations in all the right ways. Contact SmallBall for more information on how your charity can get started today.

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