It’s the week before Christmas. You check the mail daily for donations. The letters have been sent, the emails, too. What is left to do?
Have board members, CEO, and staff make phone calls to donors who have not yet given, but even more important to your development strategy, call those who have given to say, “thank you.”
No donor wants to feel like an ATM. Rather, donors want to feel connected to your organization and its mission. A phone call is a terrific way to convey a meaningful sentiment of gratitude.
- “Hi Sally, I saw your gift come in the mail today and I just wanted to say thank you for thinking of us, especially at this time of year. Let’s plan a tour of our site in the new year.”
- “Hi Bob, you are so important to us. This gift marks ten consecutive years of your support. I hope you know how much you mean to the kids we serve. We couldn’t do what we do without you.”
- “Hi Ted, welcome to the family. I noticed this is the first donation you’ve given to us and I wanted to make sure you heard from me personally. Thank you for believing in us.”
Author and researcher Penelope Burk shares that even leaving a message matters. In her research 34% of donors said a live thank you call inspired them to give again, and 33% of donors said a voicemail message inspired them to give again. She also found that a “thank you call within 60 days of making a gift is more likely to influence renewal.”
It is easy to make 100 calls with 10 people calling 10 donors. Think of the impact it would have if 34 of those donors give again and give more.
If you get lucky enough to get the donor on the phone, rather than voicemail, have a brief conversation. You may learn something new. And that can be the beginning of a deeper relationship.
Here’s to ringing in the holidays.
Article by: Kerri Laubenthal Mollard, Founder & CEO