In a recent article published in The Chronical of Philanthropy , mid-level donors hold a huge opportunity for fundraisers amid a decline in giving. According to a new study, 31% of such donors have made a bequest, and 23% are considering a donation. Furthermore, mid-level donors who give $1,000 to $10,000 annually are extremely loyal and are good prospects to increase their giving to help organizations through lean times.

One of the authors of this research study said that organizations are now paying the price for an overreliance on major donors and now is the time to start or jump-start midlevel giving programs. This may seem like a daunting task for some hospital foundations using their patient data to prospect, considering the volume of patient records. However, through our experience, we find only about 15% of a patient volume will be responsive to mid-level giving. A very manageable segment of a patient census.

So why should you invest in a strategy to include outreach to those outside your traditional approaches tied to wealth and major gift?

  • Stable Revenue Stream: Mid-level donors often provide a consistent and reliable source of revenue for your foundation. While major donors can make large one-time gifts and smaller donors contribute smaller amounts more frequently, mid-level donors typically offer a balance between the two, making regular, significant contributions.
  • Long-Term Engagement: Mid-level donors often have a deeper level of engagement with your organization compared to smaller, occasional donors. They are usually more committed to your cause and interested in forming ongoing relationships. This can lead to increased retention rates and loyalty over time.
  • Potential for Major Gifts: Mid-level donors represent a pool of individuals who have the capacity to increase their giving over time. By cultivating relationships with them effectively, you may be able to identify prospects for major gifts in the future as their capacity and interest in your organization grow.
  • Diversification of Funding Sources: Relying solely on major donors and corporate gifts can leave your organization vulnerable to fluctuations in giving. By diversifying your donor base to include mid-level donors, you spread out your risk and create a more stable financial foundation for your organization.

Consider the following to implement a data-driven strategy on mid-level giving.

  • Identify Mid-level Giving Characteristics from Your Existing Data:  Analyze your donor database to identify individuals who fall within a mid-level giving range. This typically involves looking at giving history, frequency of donations, and the total amount given over a certain period.  In our process, we build patterns from historical data.  We use your data to gain insights into patterns and behavior to help identify what motivates giving.  You can even use that data to sample against your patient census to get an idea of the potential volume of prospects for your new strategy to develop a budget.
  • Personalization: Use external data to segment donor audiences, identify the correct outreach strategy and what type of outreach is appropriate. Tailor your communication and stewardship efforts to the preferences and interests of mid-level donors. This might include sending personalized thank you notes, inviting them to exclusive events or behind-the-scenes tours. Provide regular updates about how their contributions are making a difference. 
  • New Strategy Deployment:  Your patient census contains patients that are likely prospects that are new to your system or even lapsed patients that haven’t been seen over a long period of time.  These are ideal targets to begin prospecting for a mid-level outreach in order to introduce them to the foundation or reacquaint them for the Foundations goal.  It is a great first step in onboarding a new donor.

 By including a focus on mid-level giving and leveraging your data to inform strategy, you can strengthen relationships with more donors in your community, increase revenue, and build a more sustainable foundation for your organization’s mission. We’ve consistently emphasized the importance of mid-level giving over the years. Undoubtedly, it’s a tough period for many healthcare fundraisers. Mid-level giving presents an opportunity to bridge the gap in achieving annual goals.

If you’re interested in learning how we can help please connect with us at Our services are designed to help healthcare fundraisers effectively use their patient data to find more donors and improve their performance and ROI. 

[1] To see the important study on Midlevel Giving please see.  The Missing Middle: A Cross-Vertical Study