With demand for services up and voluntary income down, it’s understandable that charities may be relegating donor care in favour of banker packs and big ROI’s.
But don’t write off the humble donor care piece just yet… it might still prove to be your star performer.
As the nation came together to Clap For Our Carers again last Thursday I felt heartened, and in some way, more connected with what was going on in the outside world. I wondered if our Carers felt it too – seeing all the slipper-clad people banging their saucepans on the evening news. I hope so. It might just be a simple gesture, but I’m a firm believer that even a little bit of gratitude can go a very long way.
Now, more than ever, your supporters will want to hear from you too. To be told how appreciated and valued they are. To know that all their hard work is paying off, making a positive impact and not going unnoticed.
Fundraisers would be wise to consider retention as much as income generation, because thanking donors is not just common sense, its proven to encourage loyalty. We know that a perfectly timed update or a simple thank-you card can greatly increase the lifetime value of a supporter. Showing a little gratitude at this stage, could pay dividends in the long run.
So, how can you show your supporters some extra love in such lean times?
Donor care doesn’t have to be complex and it doesn’t have to break the bank either. When we tested sending a postcard to FOUR PAWS donors to update them about an animal they had helped to rescue, they were thrilled to see the impact of their support. Nothing screams success louder than a bear cub with full tummy and a look of contentment on its face!
Supporters didn’t just appreciate the sentiment, they felt inspired. As a result, when a fundraising appeal dropped one week later, we saw a significant uplift in both response rates and average gifts. In fact, the postcard was so successful that FOUR PAWS have now included it in their annual mailing plan.
Naturally, donors like to be acknowledged for their contribution, and rightfully so, but in my experience the connection goes far deeper than that. When I give, I want to know about the people who are benefiting – and the difference my donation will make to their lives.
Last year, we worked with The Christie to send donors an update on an appeal from the previous year. There was no financial ask, however, donors were given an opportunity to write back to a patient. The responses came flooding in with some incredible messages of support. It’s these reciprocal acts of kindness that will become etched in supporter’s memories, rather than the quick, one-off transactions.
So, why not think about how you can squeeze an extra ounce of gratitude out of your fundraising today. Our advice? Keep it relevant, keep it simple and, above all, keep it about your donors and the impact they are making.
Lauren Hatch, Senior Copywriter
Got a fundraising dilemma? As always, we’re here to help. We’re operating as normal and you can reach us on 07917 113 157 or at email@example.com.