Even a Tiny Gesture Can Make Monthly Donors Feel Special
Recently, I presented at the Faith and Fundraising Conference in Milwaukee for about 400 in-person attendees. It was so wonderful to see people I hadn’t seen in a few years.
Everybody had to show either proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test. Attendees indicated how comfortable they were with interacting with others through a small dot on their name badges. Green meant handshakes were OK, yellow showed that a fist or elbow bump was permitted and red indicated to keep a safe distance. Everybody was very respectful with the color indicator being the first thing people viewed — what color was the dot before reaching out.
This tiny, colored dot made me think of other ways fundraisers can make their donors — and especially their monthly donors — feel special. It really does not take much.
I always recommend inviting your monthly donors to your events. For virtual events, that was already really easy.
But now the country is opening up again and you’re planning in-person events, consider inviting your monthly donors as well. They may not always be able to come. They may not always be able to purchase the high-priced ticket, but they’ll feel special if you invite them to be part of it.
Then, if they come, consider adding a special dot, star or little branded sticker on the donor’s name badge to indicate they’re a monthly donor. It’s a great conversation starter. People do look at those name badges and stickers.
It costs you virtually nothing, but it may very well help you grow your number of monthly donors. I know several organizations, especially those that are local/regional, aht have done exactly that.
Remember, it’s all about planting the seeds about monthly giving while engaging and stewarding your monthly donors in special ways. Even a tiny gesture, like a dot on a donor’s name badge, can make a difference!
Erica Waasdorp is one of the leading experts on monthly giving. She is the president of A Direct Solution, a company serving nonprofit organizations with fundraising and direct marketing needs, with a focus on monthly giving and appeals. She authored "Monthly Giving: The Sleeping Giant" and "Monthly Giving Made Easy." She regularly blogs and presents on fundraising, appeals and monthly giving — in person and through webinars. She is happy to answer any questions you may have about this great way of improving retention rates for your donors.
Erica has over 30 years of experience in nonprofits and direct response. She helped the nonprofits she works with raise millions of dollars through monthly giving programs. She is also very actively supports organizations with annual fund planning and execution, ranging from copywriting, creative, lists, print and mail execution.
When she’s not working or writing, Erica can be found on the golf course (she’s a straight shooter) or quietly reading a book. And if there’s an event with a live band, she and her husband, Patrick, can be found on the dance floor. She also loves watching British drama on PBS. Erica and Patrick have two step sons and a cat, Mientje.