Ken Burnett

Saying thank you. Recession or no recession, it’s one of the most important things you can do to keep more donors. Of course, you might already know “the basics” — things like thanking your donors promptly, segmenting by giving level or personalizing your letters. But there’s lots more to effective, engaging thank-you letters. And with the help of nonprofits from Toronto to Tasmania, you’re about to find out how much more.

What follows is a short selection of ideas you can use to enable your nonprofit organisation to be just far enough ahead of all the others to ensure you have all the success you need. Please note: This list is very far from definitive. Use it to stimulate thoughts and ideas and add your own ways to be “15 minutes ahead.” Look not for big ideas and major breakthroughs. Instead seek out the easy wins and incremental advances that can be found in abundance whatever your field or fields of endeavour. All of what follows will not be relevant for each organisation. Adapt these

Stopping passers-by in the street and asking them to sign up, there and then, to a monthly electronic payment to your nonprofit may, on the face of it, seem the quickest possible way to lose friends and irritate people. And so it is. Fundraisers worldwide may have found face-to-face fundraising stunningly lucrative — in the short term, at least — but they’ve also contributed to general resentment and dislike of the way charity fundraisers do business, and probably to quite a few future bequests being scrubbed from wills. In many main streets and shopping malls of the United Kingdom, Europe and elsewhere, potential donors are

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