Sometime very soon, I am going to launch an experiment where I donate to 20-30 nonprofits that I currently have no contact with and then see what kind of communications I get back from them over time. I’d like your help in shaping this project.

I’m especially interested in the frequency and content of the communication. How personalized will it be? Will they attempt to learn more about me? Will they encourage me to do more? What will they highlight in their communications to me? What format will the communications take?

I’m still thinking about the right mix of nonprofits and donation levels and methods and would love to hear your thoughts. I’m not looking for a statistically accurate methodology, just a really interesting one.

— Who should I give to and what should the mix look like? I’d like the list to include some nonprofits that I currently know nothing about (although I won’t give to any group whose mission I completely oppose — let’s save that for another experiment). Should I go for a random mix of sizes, age, and missions? Or should I give to some similar organizations to see how they compare?

— I’ll spend $500 upfront on donations, with more to come later in the year, depending how this all turns out. Should I give $20 to 25 groups? Or should I go with $10 to 20 and $100 to 3 groups? Or some other combination?

— I’d like to give in a variety of ways, e.g. snail mail, online, through Facebook Causes, etc. What other methods should I include? Should I give to the same nonprofit in a couple of different ways to see if I’m treated differently?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on all of this over the next week. Naturally, I’ll let you know what happens over the next several months as the results come in.

Published On: April 30, 2008|Categories: Fundraising|