Good News

Posted by on Dec 8, 2015 in Communication, Donor Cultivation, Featured, Membership, Staff Development, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Good News

Good News

I’ve heard that close to seventy percent of all charitable gifts are made each year between October and January. If we want to keep getting a share of this important giving season, communicating with our donors is more critical than ever.

From your solicitations to your newsletters, to your updates and thank you letters, the importance of communicating warmth, openness, and a sense of momentum is magnified.

 

Fundraiser’s Almanac – December

 

So resist the temptation time-saving temptation to treat everyone the same. Avoid the trap of seeing “them” as simply a bank account for “our” work. I’ve talked on this blog about communicating Good News. When you do, remember that the donor is part of the “we” that got it done.

I get stuff every day in the mail that makes me cringe. Here are several examples. Each of these sentences was taken directly from a letter I received in today’s mail. Three were solicitations. One was an invitation. One was a Thank You letter.

DON’T say these things in your letters:

  • DON’T SAY “Thank you for helping us make this a year to remember.”
  • DON’T SAY “We couldn’t have done it without you.”
  • DON’T SAY “After we conserve these lands, our stewards work to balance the needs of the natural environment and ongoing public use.”
  • DON’T SAY “We couldn’t do this critical work without out dedicated members.”
  • DON’T SAY “Please come learn why our mission is important and why we are asking you to help support these important programs.”

Try these instead:

  • DO SAY “Thank you for making this a year to remember.”
  • DO SAY “Your involvement has made all this possible.”
  • DO SAY “Balancing the needs of the natural environment with ongoing public use takes dedicated and passionate ecologists, attorneys, board members, volunteers, land stewards, members, and many more. Thank you for playing such an important part.”
  • DO SAY “Members like you make this happen.”
  • DO SAY “Please come learn why this mission is so important and how you can make such a critical difference in these programs.”

 

I’m interested in your stories about how you delivered good news to your donors this year. Either post a comment below or send me an email at fundraisinghelp at sbcglobal dot net. I’ll share everything I get.

 

Happy Holidays!

David Allen

 

Related Posts:

Donor Strategies: Good News, Save the Date

Good News (June)

Good News (September)

 

Photo credit: Sprague Lake Sunrise by Walt Kaesler.

 

Find out more about how David can help with your fundraising campaigns here.