Re: Using Emails to Effectively Thank Donors
(From Cheryl: My colleague, Susan Greco Marchese, the marketing director for Production Solutions/PS Digital, and I got to talking about the recent buzz around the efficiency vs. the efficacy model of thanking donors to impress them enough to get those next — and subsequent — gifts.
If you thank them quickly, will they come back for more of your mission? If you thank them with a flourish, will that make an even more memorable impression?
I’m a paper-lover and Sue is an integrated marketer, but we both respect the value of both paper and digital acknowledgments. Here, Sue deconstructs digital thank-you campaigns into four categories that I thought FundRaising Success readers would find valuable.)
I’m of the mind-set that you can’t thank your donors enough. Many nonprofit organizations have begun employing email thank-yous followed by personalized notes/letters of thanks after securing that first gift. But we all have different definitions about what an email acknowledgment really is. There are actually four types of email thank-yous to consider when you’re developing an integrated direct-marketing campaign. I’ve outlined them here and added my 2 cents about how you can make each of these efforts even more compelling to get your first-time donor to want to learn more about your mission.
The ‘bot’ thank-you
Your donor just finished pressing the PROCESS MY DONATION button and instantly gets an on-screen message that thanks him for his donation. There’s nothing personal about it unless your organization uses a more advanced content-management system (CMS) that can be personalized.
Pros: It’s fast and easy to get out the door! It is automatically scheduled (so no need to stop what you’re doing to send an email). Low-cost.
Cons: It’s robotic (bot) and, therefore, lacks heart. It’s about as compelling as a payment receipt from placing any online retail order. However, it’s a necessity in a financial transaction, and a donation is what it is … a financial transaction.