You just finished working your tail off at year end to attract new donors and compel past donors to invest in your cause again. I’m sure you thanked them profusely.
And here we are – a new year. So now what?
Your donors what to hear about your PLANS. Your bold, get-the-heart-racing plans! And you want them to continue their support for decades, right?
When you were in the throes of your year-end campaign you probably shared how you will invest their donations Good move. And now it’s time to elaborate and tell them again about how you intend to sustain, and perhaps do more of, your good work.
Consider telling them your plans for:
- How you’re expanding or renovating facilities and why.
- How you’re preparing to scale your programs and services.
- Expanding your team and why it matters.
- The new program or service you’re launching this year.
- Who you intend to form a new, exciting partnership with!
- When you’re rolling out a new technology platform and why.
What else can you share with your investors? What else might increase your donor retention?
You see, these people trust you and they said so with their money. So now you need to show them the goods. You’ll tell them more about impact a little later in the year, but this is the perfect time to share your plans that will support your dreams.
If you aren’t sure how to do this, take a look at your communication plan or stewardship plan, whatever you call it at your organization. If you don’t see something in it about sharing your plans, it’s time to add it.
Whether you’re communicating by email, social media, print letters or any other channel, change it up a bit so it grabs their attention:
- Use new images that really connect to the mission.
- Include video of a volunteer, participant, your CEO or anyone who can tell your compelling story and convey enthusiasm. Connect it to the mission.
- Be specific – show how your plans will create positive change. I would be much more interested in understanding the “why” behind a new team member, technology or renovation than just being told it’s happening. Connect it to the mission.
- And if you really want to knock their socks off, ask them for feedback.
Yep, insert a comment box or a survey link (then you could ask them more than one question) and ask them what they like about your plan, what suggestions they might have, ask who else they think might be interested in knowing about your plans, and encourage them to ask questions.
You’ll likely want to segment your donors because you may already have a relationship with some folks or desire to build a stronger relationship with others. So you can meet with them or call them and share/ask directly versus email.
BONUS TIP: Be sure you’re ready to receive responses and reply accordingly. There’s nothing worse than ignoring your donors after they have taken the time to provide feedback. Wouldn’t it be great if you share a summary of the feedback you get in your next newsletter too?
Your donors care about your work so don’t underestimate the value of your stewardship. Who knows? Some of these people may become volunteers and ambassadors for you. Share your plans so you can help facilitate that success and increase the lifetime value of your donors.