Once your fundraiser is behind you and Thank You notes have been sent, it’s time to follow up with donors. A follow up is just touching base. It’s not an ask for a donation or volunteer work. It’s not even a thank you for past contributions (although, you can always say thank you again during the follow-up).
One of the most important reasons to touch base after the thank you message is to ensure you retain donors. Studies show 18% of donors leave or refrain from contributing due to lack of communication. This makes the follow-up an essential part of your fundraising efforts. It also helps build relationships with those that are passionate about your vision.
To help, here are a few best practices on how to touch base after the thank you notes have been sent to donors.
Decide how to follow up
First, decide how you’ll touch base. Here are just a few examples:
- Phone calls
- Social media
- In-person visits
- Direct mail
- Text message
As you decide, note the way the person you’re following up with likes to communicate. Would they prefer a non-intrusive follow-up? Or, do they like to get involved? Do they only read and respond to text? Take into account what would work best for their schedules and lifestyle and go from there.
Schedule time on your calendar
Next, look at your calendar for the best times to reach out. Set a hard date for when you’ll send an email or card. Use a tool like DonorDirect’s StudioEnterprise with advanced CRM to send personalized emails and direct mail. Your CRM can also create workflows and schedules as well as track donor activity to help you stay on top of everything.
If you’re holding a major donor event, create a complete event plan detailing out how you want your donors experience to be from start to finish. This helps you refine your timeline, so you maximize the experience for them and connect them deeper with your organization’s mission.
Whether you’re writing a donor letter or hosting a donor event, make sure you’re thoughtful, intentional, and engaging to the fullest. It’s essential that you’re genuine and make the follow up personal. No one likes to feel like they’re a box on your list getting checked off.
A great donor-management software can help you segment the list so you can add in personalization to your communication making them feel as if you are speaking to an audience of one.
Cultivating relationships with your ministry takes time and effort, and the more you put into it, the more you’ll get out of it. We’d love to partner with you to make donor management and communication as seamless and easy as possible.
Schedule a free no-obligation demo to learn how DonorDirect’s donor management and CRM solution can help you successfully follow up with your donors.