Quickly Improve Participation In Time For The End of Your Fiscal Year
by Kim Gross
Often, we get the question ‘When do we push too hard for a gift that we offend our prospective donors?’ That question isn’t always easy to answer – but there are a few best practices that we have discovered throughout the years that can paint a clearer picture.
Are the prospects engaged?
Chances are, if they are opening your e-mails and clicking to areas such as your website or personalized micro-sites, they have a deeper interest in your organization and are more likely to give.
Have they given in the past?
If they have made a gift in the past few years, they have some sort of connection with your organization and may just need a personal outreach effort to get reconnected.
How many times have you reached out to them?
There is a difference between sending solicitation e-mails every month vs. every other week. Take a look at your solicitation calendar and calculate how many times you’ve reached out to your prospective donors. Chances are it’s not as often as you think.
At the end of the day, fundraising is a lot like acquiring new customers. It is important to start with qualified leads, or in the non-profit world, engaged donors, and work your way down the solicitation ladder from there.
How well do you say thank you?
It’s true – the ‘Thank You’ is sometimes more important than the ask!
The start of a new fiscal year means re-grouping and re-strategizing to meet those ever growing participation and dollar goals. But before you begin sending solicitations to all of your past donors, think about how you are going to thank them and acknowledge their last gift. Philanthropy reports show that it costs organizations, on average, ten times more to recruit a new donor than it does to retain an existing one. People give because it makes them feel good. Continue to make them feel good about their decision to give to your organization and they will be donors for life.
What are you doing for your current donors as you kick off a new campaign?
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