12 Easy Ways to Create Happy Donors and Sustainable Cash Flow
Want more gifts? Want happy donors? Want the holy grail of fundraising —sustainable cash flow that you can count on year after year?
Here are 12 simple steps any organization can take right now to make their donors happy, boost their retention rates and create sustainable gifts year after year.
These are the changes that matter. They are not complicated. They don't require a lot of decision making or processing. They don't even take a ton of time! Just implement them today at your organization, and you'll see higher fundraising totals because your donors feel more appreciated and connected to your cause.
These ideas are from a very smart, real, live fundraiser, Ann Kensek, at The Counseling Service of Addison County in Vermont.
Now let me tell you about Ann — she has lots on her plate. Development and fundraising are only one part of her job. But from my perspective, she's certainly figured out how to be successful!
This list of smart steps came from her comment on a recent post in The Agitator blog.
She shared all the new changes she was making in order to increase donor happiness and boost donor retention (aka sustainable cash flow).
Take Ann's list and make it your own!
- Calling donors the day their gifts arrive to say thank you.
- Got Bloomerang software as a database to create a laser focus on donor retention. She says she loves it!
- Thank-you notes are usually quick and personalized.
- Thank-you notes tell donors "what their donations have done" whenever possible.
- Getting specific stories and quotes from clients to include in thank-you letters.
- Working on "how to tell donor and client stories," within a careful environment of patient confidentially and HIPAA regulations.
- Creating a "donor-centric" newsletter. (That means it's not about the organization. Instead, the newsletter is about patients, the work and donors.)
- The executive director or a board member signs every thank-you note.
- Sometimes a lot of people sign thank-you letters.
- Every single appeal has a brief, handwritten, personal note in addition to the main letter.
- She's working on improving and upgrading the organization's website and donation page.
- This is my favorite: She's developing a plan to implement "what needs to be done step by step, understanding that this is a learning process and will take some time."
Hurray for Ann! Sounds like she has a supportive team working with her. Give these steps a try, and let me know your results!