Donation Acknowledgement Tips

From the NonProfitTimes… In our instant gratification society, everyone likes to hear a thank you for the efforts. But for fundraising, is there a way to incorporate a successful acknowledgement program, while positioning your organization for increased donations?

Paulette M. Karas, CFRE, for Marist Brothers and Chris Moore, executive vice president at International Data Management certainly thought so. During their presentation at the 2011 National Catholic Development Conference (NCDC) in Orlando, Fla., the two offered five solutions on how you can turn “thank you’s” into future fundraising dollars.

* Be Timely — Acknowledge the gift within 24-48 hours. As a general rule of thumb never take longer than 72 hours. Thanking people quickly will help solidify the goodwill you are trying to establish.

* Be Personal — Try to be specific about your donor’s interests. And when possible, try to personalize the acknowledgement. Including an addition reply envelope even gives the donor an opportunity to make another gift.

* Make New Donors Feel Special — Approximately 50 percent of new donors who give to an organization will never give again. With new donors explain how their gift supports your work in a larger way.

* Be Humble — Actually say, “Thank You!” Appreciate your donor’s generosity. A donor who feels respected and appreciated is more engaged and will give more.

* Once again, Be Timely — A quick turnaround trumps all other variables like open face vs. closed face and laser vs. handwritten signature. A quick turnaround time also leads to measurably higher donor retention and lifetime value.

Any additional tips?

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About Gary Coiro

Nonprofit & Church Leader Nonprofit Leader and Consultant since 2004, following 15 years as a pastor. Competencies include board development, fundraising, staff development and management, strategic planning, church work, Bible teaching, and capital campaigns. Currently consulting and serving on the Church Ministries Management Team for a large multi-cultural evangelical church.
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