Adrienne was not kidding this is actually a very good article. Being an economics major, I study the decision-making that takes place surrounding scare resources...money is only a part of this. People tend to think economics is money, no, that is finance.
What is great about this article is that it has deciphered a donor's decision-making process, basically giving tips to manipulate your campaign to incentivize donations, it's genius.
One of my favorites was "the power of reciprocity" - feeling compelled to give to those that give to you, or give to others. My roommates and I basically live by this. I cook dinner one night, so he buys the next night. It not only ultimately balances out financially (which is important, one person should not give more than another), but it creates a stronger relationship, or bond between the two people engaging in the 'reciprocity process'. Establishing a relationship between donor and acceptor (couldn't think of a better word) is basically the point this article is trying to make - that creating a sense of trust, whether that involves legitimacy of your project or your generosity, it will help better your campaign. But like I said, one person should not be giving more than another.
I think I mostly agree with the 'making people feel guilty' section, but the very skeptical voice in my head also knows that people are very selfish - I mean Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations was based on the idea that people are selfish, and tend to engage in activities that promote self interest. So part of me feels like the 'making people feel guilty' strategy is kind of a been there done that thing. Here is a strange video I remember seeing at some point - and I realize this video has a whole set of problems itself - but it kind of proves my point a little.
Now as a solution to my skepticisms, I feel like humor tends to draw people in (and yes, here self-interest is prevalent if you consider people like being entertained), but what humor also does, is let people know you do not take yourself so seriously. Now I realize set up in the wrong way this can have a negative effect, but tastefully structured, a bit of humor in a campaign video (i.e. making fun of yourself) can make you very likable, thus compelling people to donate. I don't know though, humor might just be my thing.
I absolutely agree with including the lowest donation possible as an option, because along with being selfish, people are competitive, and tend to even compete with themselves, perhaps how generous they might be today, along with the more common competition that exists with other donors. For instance, my mother always out does my father (they are divorced), when it comes to donating to sporting events or fundraisers...I guarantee she will give more to Visions than my Dad will...and yes, she does this on purpose. The only downside I see to this argument, pertaining to online donations, is that a donor is not physically in front of another donor, therefore they cannot actually see what size of a donation is being offered.
Everything else was very informative, but did not strike up too many other ideas in my mind.