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John Sutton & Associates
Brilliant on the Basics an SRG project to improve station performance in individual giving.
Read Individual Giving to Public Radio: Analysis, Theory, Proven Practices and Good Ideas to Raise More Money. This in-depth report draws from a wide-range of consultants, analysts, and SRG's own research.
Individual giving is public radio's largest single source of support. But in FY 2006, after adjusting for inflation, our collective revenue from individuals was less than the year before. Only by a little bit, but less all the same.
This should not be much of a surprise. We know that listening drives listener support and with flat audiences across public radio we have now hit a plateau in giving as well. Listening is not the only determinant, however. HOW we raise our listener support – finding new donors, renewing and upgrading them, getting them back when they wander – is also critical. So we need to explore whether we are doing the best job possible on all these fronts.
Years ago, when we kicked off a group project focused on membership, we did an assessment of the participants' individual giving programs. Given that the group included some of public radio's top performers, we were a bit startled to find "holes" in many of the programs: key steps that were not being taken in a consistent, reliable way, proven practices that were missing from some stations repertoires, and so on. Most every station can benefit from a periodic review of its individual giving program. As we have repeatedly affirmed, there are enormous dividends from consistently being Brilliant on the Basics.