Things to Keep in Mind When Thanking Your #GivingTuesday Donors
This year's Giving Tuesday is a beacon of hope in a year filled with struggle and grief for so many. On this day, we all celebrate gratitude and support that comes in many different forms. Perhaps this day of global generosity in 2020 is the most critical Giving Tuesday since the inception of the event, as we are amid a pandemic of historic proportions. This year has thrown many curveballs at us, and statistics show a stark reality; nonprofits are facing increasing demands this year, as millions of people deal with the economic fallout of the pandemic. Unemployment has climbed to an astounding rate, which drives a larger need in communities for social services and assistance of all kinds. In many cases, the people who have supported their favorite nonprofits in years past are now turning to the same organization for help. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you take the vital step of thanking your donors for their support during this time of great need.
Head off donor fatigue by engaging your donors right away.
Givingtuesday.org has published research that suggests people are motivated to give to many different causes. During this time of uncertainty, you must ensure your relationship with your donors is experiential and not transactional. Data shows that the majority of donors also take some other action other than just donating money. Providing multiple opportunities to show support helps make your nonprofit and your mission even more relevant. Givingtuesday.org's data shows that donor fatigue is a function of the quality of the message and engagement, rather than a question of frequency. Keep this top of mind when creating campaigns to reach donors; remember, it is a two-way street. Keep the channels open for your supporters to engage and receive inspiration from what their generosity has helped your nonprofit accomplish.
Make Giving Tuesday donors part of your next appeal.
We've already established that most donors want to take some other course of action other than just donating funds to your cause. Here is a significant next step that accomplishes two things in one. By including your Giving Tuesday donors in your next appeal – you are not only giving substance to your mission, but you are also honoring and including your recent supporters, which is one of the most sincere ways of saying "thank you." There are several ways you can accomplish this; you can invite your recent donors to participate in a video or written testimonial, or post photos of themselves or loved ones to a virtual wall relating to your mission. You can also invite them to become ambassadors for your mission by activating their social networks to shine a light on the cause. Don't look at it as if you are asking too much from your donors; you may be surprised at the response rates. An engaged donor is a loyal donor.
Thank your donors FAST.
Perhaps the most crucial aspect of acknowledging a donor's gift is the speed at which you do it. Make sure you thank each donor as fast as possible. The key to engagement and establishing donor loyalty is being sincere about your gratitude, including them in as many opportunities to show them how their support helps, and how they can continue helping. This can start with shout-outs on social media or letters from someone they have helped. Keep in mind that donor acknowledgments aren't unique – other nonprofits are thanking them too. Make sure your actions stand out and show your sincere thanks – and you'll create a recipe for sustained success.