DM Diagnosis: Thank You
Unlike the No Fly nonprofit, however, this organization does send me more than one piece of mail annually. In the first two months of 2009 alone, I received a blizzard of resolicitations — five special appeals, two annual renewals and a magazine. Wow. The folks at this organization definitely know where I live, even if they don’t know or care that I just sent $50.
These two nonprofits are in good (?) company, I regret to report. More than 23 percent of the organizations I made contributions to in this last round of giving failed to acknowledge my gift after more than eight weeks. None of them are obscure, little-known groups; they are well-known, major mailers.
And that concludes my rant on the sad state of acknowledgments — because there’s a lot to be celebrated in what many nonprofits are doing to thank and cultivate donors.
A déjà vu thank-you
One of my alter egos, Dee Dee Rae, sent Paralyzed Veterans of America a gift in response to an acquisition package she received after she subscribed to the National Enquirer a few years ago. In response to the $7 cash gift she tucked into a PVA security-screen return envelope this past New Year’s Eve, on Feb. 17, Dee Dee Rae received what initially looks like a typical PVA appeal.
However, inside the plain kraft carrier is a personalized notepad topped with a reply slip that has a “Gift Acknowledgment” headline and a circled note: “Many thanks for your recent gift of $7.” Below the reply slip is a sheet of personalized mailing labels and, below that, a thank-you message on the first sheet of the notepad.
A classic déjà vu of the original offer, the thank-you doubles both as an acknowledgment and a prompt for the next modest donation — a winning formula for this type of small-gift fundraising program.