Direct Mail Is Still The Strongest Prompt For Donations

According to the latest survey by a global research company, Direct Mail is still the strongest prompt for donations. However, there is no hiding from the fact that Social Media is beginning to be a significant motivator for younger people.

21% of people surveyed cited Direct Mail solicitations as the prompt for their most recent donation.

Direct Mail is particularly successful with the over 55s with 25% of them making their last donation in response to Direct Mail compared to only 14% of 18-34 year olds.

Lower income households also respond strongly to direct marketing with 29% of those earning £24k or less responding to Direct Mail for their last donation, compared to only 18% of those earning £50k+.

The media plays an important role with 12% of people being prompted for their last donation by something they saw on TV, in a newspaper or heard on the radio.  It seems a stronger prompt for men (14%) than women (10%).

21% of those who have supported a crisis or disaster related charity in the last 12 months were motivated by media for their last charitable gift. Lower income givers are also swayed with the media with 17% of their last donation being prompted by information they heard in the media.

Social Media

Although social media has yet to take off as a major prompt, with only 6% of adults responding to Facebook or Twitter for their last donation, social media has become a significant motivator for 18—34 year olds.

11% of the younger generation responded to social media for their last donation compared to only 3% of those aged 55+.

Social media also seems to have a higher response rate for low-income households (11%).


Email prompted 10% of people to make their last donation.  The over 55s (12%) are slightly more likely to respond to email than younger responders (9%).  Those who have supported the arts in the last 12 months (25%) were particularly likely to respond to email.

Wealthier responders were the most cautious in their response to solicitations of any kind.  56% of those earning £50k+ made their last donation to a charity that they already regularly support.

(Total sample size was 1157 adults – aged 18+)


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