How do charities encourage us to give up some Donate? Psychology writer and lecturer Claudia Hammond has found that there are ways in which these associations are more effective than others.
In a typical ad designed to attract donors In the aftermath of an earthquake, we often see a family standing grieving in front of their destroyed home while waiting for help to arrive. The children in such advertisements tend to be very attractive with their charming smiles and wide eyes. The idea is that we won’t be able to resist these adorable kids. However, several studies indicate that this classic picture may not be quite as convincing as you might expect.
Researcher Hana Zagivka from the University of Holloway in London has found that people are more likely to donate after natural disasters than after a civil war, for example, as they judge that people affected by a natural disaster have no part in it, as in the civil war. But they also donate more if people appear trying to help themselves rather than passively waiting for help. So the lesson here is to use pictures of families trying to build a shelter, for example, rather than sitting and waiting in the hope of help arriving.
2-Don’t always focus on individual stories
When a major disaster strikes, it can be hard to imagine exactly what happens on the ground, so fundraisers often tell us someone’s story, because it helps us empathize with the people in their troubles. That sounds like a good idea, because we put ourselves in their shoes, we realize how terrible life is for them, and so we donate some money in the hope of relieving their pain. However, we hear so many individual stories now that similar accounts are losing their sway.
What NGOs really need is to get recurring donations from people who become committed to their organization, rather than a one-time donation after hearing one individual story. So sometimes it may be best for charities to focus on the bigger picture instead.
What charities need to do, if they can, is to find out if potential donors may sympathize with the individuals they are helping. If not, seeking empathy with more abstract concepts, such as addressing issues of social justice or improving the world, may be more effective.
3-Choose Your Words Carefully
Changing just one word can make a difference to your donations to a charity. Psychologist Nicholas Gauguin conducted an experiment in 14 bakeries in the Brittany region. During that experiment, a fundraising tin was placed on each table, and a label was placed on it with information about a charity operating in Togo, West Africa. The labels on the cans were identical, except for one word.
On one third of the labels on the boxes, it was written that “donation = love,” and on the second third that “donation = help.” As for the last third, only the word “donation” was written on it. When psychologists counted the money, they found that the boxes labeled “love” contained nearly twice as much money as the boxes labeled “help”. The researchers suggest that the word love evokes feelings of solidarity, sympathy and support, which is what prompted people to be more generous.
4- Make donations public
Everyone wishes to present himself as kind and generous. In a 2010 study, participants were given a sum of money and told they could keep the whole sum or choose to share it with a charities chosen from a list.
Participants were significantly more likely to donate money if they thought the person on the screen in front of them was watching them. This yearning to appear generous has a dramatic effect on charitable giving sites. Although people can choose to remain anonymous on these sites, most reveal their names to show off.
5-Don’t tell the millionaire they’ll get paid
When charities ask for big donations, sometimes you try to convince donors that it will be good for them or their companies, perhaps, if they want to donate a large amount. A study by researcher Botha Deutch of 633 millionaires suggests that this approach may be counterproductive.
And it became clear from the results, that the situation of charities will be better by asking for a donation directly from a wealthy person instead of suggesting that he will earn something for it, and that it is a kind of investment. If you do the latter, there is a risk that you will put the donor in a financial frame of mind, so the association will make less money.