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Why Targeting DAF Donors Can Be a Game-Changer for Your Organization

When it comes to maximizing your fundraising efforts, knowing who to target makes all the difference. This is why finding individuals who already have a donor advised fund (DAF) can be such a game changer. With a DAF, donors can enjoy immediate tax benefits while growing and protecting their donation until they’re ready to support their chosen charities.


Who are DAF Donors?


Individuals who own donor advised funds tend to have similar characteristics. For instance, DAF donors tend to be engaged with their community and the causes that matter to them. 79% of them actively volunteer as opposed to just 25% of the general population.

Most DAF donors are also close to or already in retirement, which means they have officially reached their highest income-earning years. They’ve also likely already paid off their major expenses and are now ready and eager to use their excess funds to start giving back.


Benefits of Targeting DAFs


Donor advised funds represent a tremendous opportunity for non-profits and charitable organizations to tap into. A few more points to consider:

Gifts from DAFs tend to be substantially larger than typical contributions. According to Vanguard Charitable, the average DAF gift is $12,000. And since the average DAF donor donating at least 5 times what a non DAF donor does, this means that converting just one DAF donor could be worth $60,000 in new donations.


DAFs also tend to grow at an exponentially higher rate than that of traditional giving. For example, in 2017, overall giving grew by 5% while DAFs grew by 20% during the same period. In fact, the combined funds in DAFs exceed $140 billion and are growing at 16% YoY, with the average DAF account value totaling $162,556. Because assets within a DAF can appreciate over time, non-profits and charities can benefit from a higher overall contribution.

Many donor-advised fund sponsors, including Fidelity Charitable, also allow DAF account holders to pre-schedule recurring grants from their DAF to their chosen cause. And donors certainly take advantage of this. In fact, according to NP Trust, donors recommended grants from donor-advised funds totaled more than $25 billion to charities in 2019 alone. By educating your donors with DAFs about this feature, you can become the recipient of automatic donations.


Prioritizing your donors who have a DAF can be a source of increased annual revenue as well as a new source of planned giving revenue. Furthermore, even when there is turbulence in the financial markets, DAF donors can be a source of consistent and reliable funding unaffected by investment income, job loss, or other financial uncertainty that may limit a donor's capacity or appetite for charitable giving.


How Technology Can Help


At the end of the day, the secret to maximizing donations is relatively simple: know who to target and where to focus your efforts. By leveraging the power of data analytics, your organization can quickly and painlessly identify DAF donors, enabling you to optimize your efforts and tap into these opportunities for even greater fundraising success.


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