The Bottom Five Reasons Christian Radio Listeners Give – Finney’s Fast 5


In the Finney MediaWhy Listen® Survey, we asked thousands of Christian Music Radio listeners across the country this question:

While there are many general reasons for donating to a radio ministry, there are often special circumstances that move you from just thinking about giving to actually making a CALL, going ONLINE or writing a CHECK to make a gift. Thinking of the last few times you made a gift, how important were each of the following in TRIGGERING your decision to donate?

Among the many reasons to give, here are the Bottom Five Reasons, according to Christian music radio listeners, ranked on the percentage who indicated it was a “very important” reason to give.

5. An emergency need at the ministry 27%
4. Knowing my gift would be matched by someone else 18%
3. Urgency of meeting a goal the broadcaster set for receiving a certain number of gifts before time expires 10%
2. An offer of a free gift from the ministry if I made a donation 2%
1. Knowing the broadcaster might publicly acknowledge my gift 1%


Listeners don’t resonate with being acknowledged on the air after making a gift, with only one percent indicating it’s “very important” to them. Even if there is some false modesty here, the numbers are very low. We recommend that this low response to on-air acknowledgement at least start a conversation about how much and how often you use this technique.

If you participated in the Why Listen survey, now, as you head into a new decade, would be a good time to review the answers on giving and discuss what listeners say motivates them to give.

This month, we showed what listeners rated as low motivations. Next month, we’ll dive into their top motivations – The Top Five Reasons Listeners Give, coming in February.


Chuck Finney’s had radio playing in his head since he was just a boy. Over the course of his career, he’s worked in programming, radio research, and audience connection. Chuck’s passion for words and communication is widely recognized and he’s won several industry awards.

If you ask Chuck how he’s doing, he’ll either say “Blessed, thank you,” or “I really get to do this for a living?!” He’s the President of Finney Media, a speaker and author who loves telling stories and helping you do the same.  Chuck is married and has two adult daughters. He lives with his wife, Lynda, in the Dallas area. For more information, read about Chuck at


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We’ve all read the same books about teamwork, leadership, communication, and culture that everybody reads. We’ve mastered Maxwell, studied Sanborn, Sinek, and Sun Tzu, and liberally cribbed Collins in aborted attempts to go from good to great, but…

How’s that working out for you? 

What if you left St. Louis with an entirely new lens through which to view and act upon improvements in:

Let’s examine how this all connects together, but approach it from an entirely different angle. Don’t just think outside the box. Kick the box to the curb and start at zero.