3 ways to really improve your thanking

I have a theory that I can’t prove: I think the manner of our thanking donors matters just as much to our revenue (maybe more) than the manner of our asking.

Thing is, it’s easy to measure the success of our asking, and more complicated to measure the success of our thanking.

There is data that pretty much supports this, though you might not think so by the state of thanking from so many fundraisers:n sluggish, perfunctory, impersonal, irrelevant …

Or nonexistent.

Want to up your thanking game? Check out this post from Clairification: Never Break These 3 Donor Acknowledgment Rules. It’s a great start:

  1. Send a letter within 48 hours. Quicker would be even better. Donors need to know you received their donation, you did with it what you said you would, it’s making a difference, and it’s appreciated. And if they have to wait weeks to find that out, their passion can grow cold. Speed matters in this fast-paced time when you can get same-day delivery from your favorite online shopping site.
  2. Personalize your thank you with inserts, notes and handwriting. Find ways to make your thanking more real, personal, and attention-grabbing. Your donors get a lot of stuff in the mail, and the last thing you want is for them to not notice your thanking!
  3. Pick up the phone. Just thank them. That call dramatically improves retention, because it shows them they matter. Ideally, you should call all donors every time they give, but if that’s too much, your priorities should be first-time donors, and as many large-gift donors as possible.


Comments

2 responses to “3 ways to really improve your thanking”

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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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