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7 creative ways to thank your donors

Your donors mean a lot to you, and of course, you appreciate them. You want to keep them. Saying thank you helps keep your donors connected to you and giving to your cause. How are you planning to thank them?

If you’re not sure, no worries; we’ve got some ideas for you!

1. Record a video

Create a nice video with a private YouTube link and send the link out in a holiday card or email. It doesn’t have to be a high-production complicated video. Unless you have a video production unit, keep it simple. Video adds a nice personal touch to any thank you.

2. Include a photograph

If creating a video is too intimidating for you, consider including a photograph, something to visually connect the donor to your organization and the good work you do. A photo of clients your donors helped make a difference for will make their day. Even a simple photo of your staff holding a thank you sign is a nice touch.

3. Create a postcard

Take the photograph one step further and turn it into personalized postcards for your donors. Your photo could show behind-the-scenes work that the donors are not typically privy to. Give them a glimpse into how you do what you do.

4. Update your thank-you note

If you are sending a thank-you note or card, be sure it’s genuine and keep these ideas in mind to freshen it up.

  • Include your progress: Donors donate because they want to be a part of what you do. Be sure to let them know what their contributions funded, how they made a difference.
  • Creative opening: In today’s world of content marketing, social media, everyone is looking for a story. Don’t start your note with a standard clinical “Thank you for your generous donation,” start with a story about what the donation means to someone.
  • Change the speaker: If you have clients who benefit directly from donors’ generosity, ask if they’ll write a personal story saying what the donation means to them. The thank you needs to still come from your organization, but including a beneficiary’s personal story can be very powerful.
  • Personalize it: Even if you are just sending out an email thanking donors, be sure they are personalized, not a form email sent to everyone. Get everyone involved, ask others in your organization to help send out personalized emails to save time but still let each donor feel individually appreciated.

5. Forget the note, host an event

Hold a simple, or if you’re up for it, an elaborate event to thank donors. Create an event that is exclusively for donors, and let them know that’s why they are being invited to your dessert reception or speaker event.

6. Honor donors in your newsletter

Write an article for your newsletter showing appreciation for your sponsors. Let everyone know how important they are to your organization. You can even call sponsors out by name to recognize them further.

7. Be social

Let all your fans and followers know how much you appreciate your donors and what a difference donations can make by posting about it on social media. Author a blog post specifically dedicated to your donors and how they make your good work possible. Spread the word on any channels you can.

Bonus idea – make a personal phone call

Have a staff member, board member or volunteer reach out with a phone call to say thanks to a donor. You’ll be amazed at how a simple “We appreciate you” can earn you a donor for life.

See more of our donor retention tips.

Ronald Pruitt

Ronald Pruitt

Ronald is the President and Founder of 4aGoodCause, the fundraising CRM that makes recurring, monthly giving a breeze for small nonprofits.

For over 25 years, Ronald has had the joy of doing what he loves, building online solutions that make a difference in the world. He’s helped raise millions of dollars online for small nonprofits across the country. Connect with Ronald on LinkedIn.

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