Keeping your best donors is a vital part of ensuring the success and continued growth of your nonprofit or university. These champions help keep the lights on, and more importantly, help you make a difference in the lives of the people you support. While email fundraising is a great way to make the “ask” when it comes to donations, it can also be used to engage donors. Let’s talk about different ways you can use these email to boost engagement with your donors.
Recognizing Donation Milestones
While getting a “thank you” note after making a donation is pretty standard, it’s time to step-up the efforts you make when reaching donors. You definitely should say thank you, but also remember to remark on special “milestone” events. An example of an organization that does this well is Rotary International.
When a member of Rotary has donated $1,000 to the Rotary Foundation (supporting a variety of initiatives worldwide), they become a Paul Harris Fellow. This special club within Rotary earns you a new pin to show what you’ve contributed and in my home district, all new fellows are recognized at a dinner every year. It’s a special occasion to have donated $1,000 to the Rotary Foundation, and it should be a special occasion for your donors or alumni as well!
If your supporters reach a milestone contribution – $500, $1,000 and so on – make sure you recognize their generosity. Send an email to say thanks every time they reach a new benchmark to ensure they know that they are getting recognized by your organization.
Starting Small, Gaining Momentum
Another great way you can engage donors via email campaigns is by letting them in on the latest efforts early! Next time you want to kick-off a social fundraiser relying on peer-to-peer networking or using social media platforms, start with your group of donors who are already giving at a high level. These supporters are making the greatest contributions and you can use them as a test group for your new campaigns and get an early buzz going about what you have coming up!
You’ll want to reach out using a personalized email (such as adding their name in the subject line) and let these special donors know that you’re relying on them to help start the movement. This small, personal touch will help recruit them to meet your goal and let them know again how much they are valued by your organization.
Setting Up for Success
Remember, emails can be a great tool for your fundraising, but they work best when they are designed to meet your needs. While most email platforms do offer some basic templates for you to use, if you need help optimizing your email campaigns for mobile (and most people will be viewing your emails on a smartphone) or in ensuring that your email is designed the best way possible, our email experts at AlumniFinder are here to help. Just give us a ring and we’re here to assist!
Here are a couple of nonprofit emails we’ve seen lately that do a great job of recognizing donors: