R-E-S-P-E-C-T find out what it means to Donors!

You may think your organization does a great job thanking donors. However, if a donor doesn’t feel thanked, they may never give again. What are the 7 essential elements to creating a Donor-Centric thank you letter? If these elements are absent, you may be missing an opportunity to build donor loyalty.

Relate: “We couldn’t have done it without you. Thanks to you ___# of families received______.”  Donors want to feel good about why they gave. A sincere thank you that relates to accomplishing a mission which motivated them to give, creates a stronger connection to your mission.

Express: “Thank You for being a lifeline to our men. Because of You we can offer the compassionate care they need to get a fresh start on life”. By expressing gratitude in this way, you are connecting their gift to an admirable quality. In other words, Mrs. Donor, you are a compassionate individual, and your compassion in action is changing lives.

Say It Again: No one has ever complained about being over thanked. Not only should they be thanked immediately when they give, but it’s OK to say “Thank You” more than once in your letter. Get creative in finding new ways to say it again. It never gets too old for your donors.

Play Back: Remind them of why they Gave. They know why they gave, reinforce that motivation by restating your mission. This makes a meaningful connection with your passion for the work and their motivation for giving. “Because of you and your partnership with ____________, vulnerable children in ________ are thriving and their community is being transformed.”

Enumerate: Donors love it when you connect what they did with a tangible result. Combining gratitude with tangible results in a letter creates a powerful experience for your donor. “Your faithful support saves, strengthens, and sustains our Children.” Then enumerate how this took place, i.e. number of meals served, hours of education, hours of sheltered sleep. Make the impact come alive for the donor.

Capture: Take a picture with your words… “You put a smile on Julia’s face”. Of course, a picture is worth a thousand words, but capturing an emotion with your words is effective too.

Take the Time: Writing a timely thank you note is the FIRST step in securing your next gift. Donors don’t like to be taken for granted and they deserve all the gratitude you can muster. When their gift is about a relationship and not a transaction, the cause you both serve will reap the rewards!