Free eBook download | Thank your donors and keep them coming back

April 19, 2011

Did you know that eight of 10 first-time donors do NOT make a second gift?

Download the Lifetime Donor Attraction System today and you’ll discover:

* The Two Biggest Mistakes You Can Make in a Thank You Letter (besides not sending one!)
* How Your First Communication with a Donor Following a Gift Sets the Stage for Future Gifts
* Why You Need to Change Your Thank You Letters and How Often (and why you should include a P.S.)

When Acterra, an environmental charity in California’s Silicon Valley, recently revised its standard letter to thank donors, it decided to reinforce donors’ emotional ties to the cause, says Amber Nixon, the group’s development director.

Taking some advice from the free electronic book Lifetime Donor Attraction System, by the fund-raising consultant Pamela Grow, Ms. Nixon said she changed the first paragraph of the group’s letter to give the donor a “sense of joy,” included a personal story, and acknowledged each donor’s commitment to the cause.

An Environmental Nonprofit Seizes On Missed Opportunities, The Chronicle of Philanthropy

Free download!

 

“Got your book this morning and made it THE priority of my day to read through. What wonderful ideas!
I am new to fund development, stewardship giving and donations. The person I am replacing has been in the CEO/President role for 26 years. Our donors are very tied to giving to her, not the cause. The first thing I started to do was to call each donor to thank them and introduce myself to them as each check came in. (We are very small!) I want them to get to know me and the work that we are doing. Response has been wonderful. Next I needed a way to track my calls, so am slowly creating my checklist. Just one of the ideas that I just took away from reading your book is to create a Stewardship System. I have taken the letters I have written (we had nothing documented before I came) and have started a notebook, along with the checklists from your book. This will also be good to show my Board at our first board meeting, of some of the systems that I have implemented. I think we will ALL come out a winner with just having a simple system in place.
The section on thank you letters, falling in Love with Donors, and sending a gift as simple as a pack of gum really touched me with where I want to go and how can we start doing things now. Just because we have always done something – for the past 26 years – doesn’t mean we need to keep doing it that way. I am getting confirmation we are heading in the right direction by the responses to my phone calls, and yes the thank you cards to my thank you notes. By some of the actions and tips from your book, I can make them so much better, but you have to start somewhere!
Thank you for sharing your years of wisdom and insight. As a newbie, I am extremely grateful for your willingness to share.”
Cheryl Melendez
Executive Director

“Thanks for pointing out that my prompt “thank you” letters are NOT enough.  Although I am getting out the letters and making calls, I am not doing enough to make them personal.  I run a national nonprofit from my home office with board members situated across the country.  I had started to have them contact new members (local/regional organizations) as they joined our trade association as a way to help my efforts in retention.  But I had not given them the job of thanking our donors as I should have.The idea of a donor ‘welcome kit’ is awesome.  I’ve done ‘welcome kits’ for new families in my old job and new members in my new job – but had not made the connection to giving one to donors! And the little extras in the book are phenomenal – the links to other articles in the mentions give me tons of research/resource material to go through.I am going to implement MANY things – too many to mention.  But I will say that sending out cards for other occasions is genius!  How wonderful for donors to get a card on Thanksgiving before the holiday rush.  We have a great communication plan and I have a contact strategy, but your WOW calendar gives me a great tool to merge the two.  Keep up the good work!  Thanks a million for the free book!”

Deanna Tharpe
Executive Director
Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Kirsten Bullock April 27, 2011 at 7:47 am

Looks like a great resource. Thanks for addressing the topic of donor retention. We’re not doing our organizations any favors if we don’t create a strategy – from the beginning – to ensure that donors feel connected to our cause.

Betsy Baker April 27, 2011 at 4:24 pm

Congratulations on your new ebook! Communication with donors is key to a fruitful, long-term relationship.

Sherry Truhlar May 4, 2011 at 12:01 pm

Great resource, Pamela. Thank you letters are frequent topic of conversation at charity auction committees. Questions and debate swirl about how, when, who and why. Smart volunteers know that thank you letters lead to bigger and better relationships.

Leslie OBrien September 8, 2011 at 6:35 am

Thanks for these great tips Pamela. To your points about thanking online donors, there are some multimedia ideas here to intersperse with traditional letters: http://bit.ly/owoN8X

Xan from Juno January 16, 2012 at 8:07 am

Thanks Pamela! Need to carve out some time to read it!

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