Keeping in Touch with Your Donors
In times of higher costs and shrinking donor prospects, it’s extremely important to manage your current donor relationships. Your best donors are your current donors. That’s not to say you should let your prospecting go. Instead, it means you need to maintain a high-touch approach with your current donors, while you are out prospecting for new donors. Don’t fall into the common trap of thinking that a regular donor will always be there for you.
How to Keep in Touch
You need a plan. This plan is a nurturing and promotion plan. You want to retain your current donors and encourage them to increase their gifts. You also want them to network on your behalf.
In today’s age of global communications, there are many channels for use to keep in touch. Your organization should use all of them (unless someone has opted out of a particular mode): social media, events, emails, annual funds, newsletters, etc.
But… don’t overdo it. You want to keep a donor interested; you don’t want to end up deleted before read or marked as spam. Keep in mind – most of these communications should not be asks. That’s right. Timing is everything. If you ask your donor at every chance, it dilutes their interest. You want your donors excited about your work.
If a donor, no matter their level of giving, asks a question or makes a suggestion, have someone from staff personally reach out to address their concern. Your donors will feel closer to your organization. Think about how much you appreciate an actual person on the phone in this age of computer response. Your donors feel the same way.
A Personal Touch
Rather than a one-size fits all, consider a multi-class approach. You want your donors to continue to give to your organization. You also want a donor, when they are able, to increase their gift. This can be a simple process, by grouping your donors by Low, Middle, High and having a development plan for each class of donor.
Be truly donor-centered. If you treat people, no matter their level of giving, as an integral part of your mission, they will respond in kind.
For more ways to manage your donors and increase their gifts check out Growing Individual Gifts: An Analytic Approach to Data-Driven Success.