Thank You For Your Your Support
At this time of year hardly a day goes by without a solicitation (or two or three) appearing in my mail box. Only occasionally do I get a piece of mail that simply says “Thank you for your support this past year. Donors like you make it possible for us to (fill in the blank with the mission of the nonprofit).” Yes, most of the solicitations begin with a thank you. However, it doesn’t ring sincere since it is quickly followed by a request for support.
Now, I am not a Scrooge, nor do I object to these letters asking for money. Since research shows that 75-84% of private money given to charitable organizations comes from individuals (living and deceased), these requests are a key part of most nonprofits’ fundraising plans. Given that most Americans donate the largest portion of their charitable contributions in November and December, nonprofits would be remiss not to solicit gifts at this time.
What I do object to is how often nonprofits overlook the importance of saying thank you. Most organizations do send out the IRS required acknowledgement letter and some even make it personal. How many take the time to give the donor an appreciation call…send a handwritten note…invite them to a donor appreciation event…recognize donors in their newsletters or at public events?
Do you want to make 2010 the most prosperous year ever for your organization? Create a climate of appreciation among your board members, staff, and volunteers. Make sure to include a systematic way of thanking donors of all levels in your resource development plan. Developing a sincere “attitude of gratitude” will go a long way to maintaining and increasing your donor base.
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