Fundraisers are smart about asking. We test it all the time. We try big ideas and small tweaks. We fine-tune our audiences
What we don't understand as well is thanking those donors we find and move to action.
We know from our personal lives how important follow-up is. What you do after the gift or event is what sets the direction of the relationship.
It's quite likely it's the same in fundraising.
Katya's Nonprofit Marketing Blog gives us some ways of thanking that will most likely improve the donor relationship, at The 10 vital rules of thanking, pleasing and keeping donors:
- Know your donor
- Always thank your donors
- Thank them early
- Thank them often
- Thank them accurately
- Express gratitude
- Focus on emotion
- Give the donor credit
- Be specific about impact
- Make it personal
The smartest thing would be to test these (and other) thanking techniques. Since a simple response test, like we do when we test our asking, can't measure success, you have to track what donor do in the 12 months after you test something. A successful thanking technique would result in better retention, higher cumulative giving, or other desirable behaviors. An unsuccessful one would have no impact, or possibly a negative impact.