While plenty of hard work is put into the planning and execution of any fundraising event or volunteer day, your job on the campaign is not over until you have thoroughly followed up with your supporters and staff. Following up is critical in ensuring the success of future campaigns, retaining donors and volunteers, and cultivating an effective community that supports your organization’s mission.
It is well-known that donors tend to be loyal to a few select charities. A great way to become your donors’ favorite nonprofit is with effective follow-ups, which keep them engaged and a lasting part of your network. Furthermore, we live in a world where there are many great nonprofits competing for the same donor funds. Follow-ups serve not only as gratitude for your supporters but also as reminders that your nonprofit is active and doing important work.
There are many ways your organization can follow up, including thanking your supporters, sharing the impact of contributions, and asking for feedback. Read on for details!
1. Give Thanks
There are many ways to say thank-you! At a minimum, your supporters should receive a thank you email. On Flipcause, thank you receipts are automated, and you can customize what they say in each campaign.
Want to take it further? Personalized thank-yous, like phone calls or handwritten notes, are better when possible, and keep the connection with your supporters stronger. But even if you don’t have the resources to send personalized notes to all your donors, you can craft segmented emails with a touch of personalization to send relevant groups of donors, volunteers, and event-goers.
If you have VIP donors, you can go the extra mile and follow up with a special gift (like an exclusive party, workshop, or webinar) or personal phone call from the board. Show your appreciation creatively.
Lastly, always thank your supporters on your website, social media, and email outreach campaigns to publicly show your appreciation and acknowledge their contributions.
2. Request Feedback
Feedback from your supporters and staff is incredibly helpful because it gives you critical information about what made your campaign successful and how to improve your future campaigns. You can ask for feedback through donor surveys at the end of events or online via email outreach campaigns. You can also meet with your staff after major events to process and analyze their thoughts and experiences.
In addition to giving you valuable information about your campaigns, asking for and receiving feedback helps your community stay involved with your cause and allows supporters to feel they have a stake in the success of your organization.
3. Show Donor Impact
Following up with details about how funds are getting used and the impact of supporter contributions is important in cultivating donor retention. Donors need to know that their funds are being well-utilized in order to motivate them to donate again—they want to feel that their contributions are effective, and don’t go by the wayside.
Let donors know what their impact is by posting updates on your social networks, website, e-newsletter, and blog. Show photos of impacted communities and videos that demonstrate real strides toward your mission. Don’t have great footage? You can alternatively make a clever infographic that breaks down impact numbers and stats.
Even before distinct donor impact results are known, you can still follow up after a successful event with an email with event highlights, the amount of funds raised, and the potential impact for your mission. This will keep the flow of communication open with your supporters and will also allow them to feel good about having been a part of your event.
In short, following up is an absolutely essential step in building lasting relationships with your donors and keeping your community strong. What does your organization do to follow up with supporters? Let us know!