How often are you communicating with your donors no, asking for money isn’t part of the communications I mean. How often do you update your donors about the work you are doing, and how are you doing this?
Some organisations are only communicating with donors when they want something, but donors want, deserve to know what you have been doing and how they (the donor) has helped you achive what you have done.
When it comes to communicating with donors it seems organisations are moving away from posted (mailed) updates to e-letters.
No matter what method you are communicating with donors, it’s important that the message you are sharing isn’t all about you, it shouldn’t be a ra ra about the CEO, it should be about the work you are doing and how without the support of donors you wouldn’t have got to where you are.
If it wasn’t for the support of donors you likely wouldn’t be where you are, you likely wouldn’t haven’t achieved much. So, the righly deserve to be seen as the ”heroes” of your organisation.
I’ve often thought that sharing donor stories is important, and have seen only a few organisations do this; and the response they get, from what I’m also hearing is brilliant.
When talking with donors about your work, it’s not a time to brag. It’s a time to give thanks, to share the ups and yes, the downs.
Recently I saw a newsletter from one organisation that shared several donor stories, it was a great read and made me want to support the organisation.
I asked the organisation what sort of feedback they get when they do their newsletters, and they said that generally they get good feedback and requests for information on ways people can do more to support them. This to me is a win.
Something I’m noticing too, is that organisations are moving away from posted updates to e-letters, but forgetting that not all supporters use email. So, some are missing out, this needs to be sorted.
Using the argument that mail is too expensive doesn’t cut it with me, donors whether they have email or not deserve to know what you are doing. Why is it ok to post out an appeal for money but not something about your work successes?
Sure, with an e-letter you can have a link to ask for support, but don’t make it the main purpose of the communication, same with a posted newsletter, include a portion for people to return a donation.
Also, think about the frequency of your communications, I’ve seen some organisations send an e-letter monthly, to me that’s a turn off and could soon be seen as simply spam, and result in donors switching off.
What are you finding with your donor communications, less is more? Are donor stories working for you?