Major Donor Fundraising: One simple phrase can change your major donor fundraising forever

Major Donor Fundraising

“Thank you!”

This simple phrase is the glue that keeps your donors engaged in giving and wanting to give more over time.

When you thank your donors promptly and emotionally for their gift, they feel appreciated and start to develop a deeper connection with your organization, mission and beneficiaries you serve.

Knowing that saying thank you is so important, I challenge you to review your thank you letters and receipt packages to see if they do an absolutely great job thanking your donor for her generosity.  Consider these things when evaluating our thank you process and content.

  1. Are you thanking your donors promptly? The goal is to thank them within 72 hours after having received their gift.
  2. Are you thanking your donors emotionally? Can your donor feel your gratitude coming through the letter?
  3. Are you telling your donor what is going to happen because they gave a gift? Or are you just ‘acknowledging’ their gift and using stuffy “CFO language” or marketing-speak?
  4. Do your receipt packages include a response device and return envelope? Really successful fundraising organizations raise more money by making it as easy as possible for their donors to make their next gift.
    1. Note that they aren’t Asking for a gift, but they include a reply card and envelope because they know that some donors will be moved to send in another gift.

Do you have room for improvement when it comes to thanking your donors?  Do all you can before summer ends to improve this important part of the Ask, Thank, Report, Repeat rhythm.

Jim Shapiro
Jim Shapiro

Jim Shapiro is the fundraising coach you always wanted, the proven Sherpa who can help you get to the top of the mountain. He has 20 years experience raising money, including serving as the VP of Development for a $300m nonprofit. He then co-founded The Better Fundraising Co. to help small-to-medium nonprofits raise more money. Jim is married, serves his community by coaching high school football, and has three children.

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