I had a very interesting discussion recently with a nonprofit executive director. We were talking about the importance of thanking donors, especially long-time, loyal donors. Then she happened to mention how she had been giving to one of her favorite nonprofits through automatic payment on a monthly basis at the same dollar level for about 5 years. We did the math and realized over 5 years she had given approximately $1,500.00 Not once had anyone from the organization called her to thank her in all of that time. She even went on to say that if someone from the organization had called her and asked her if she would possibly consider increasing her monthly gift, even if just by $5, she would have said yes. What a pity. The organization is basically leaving money on the table by not asking!
This got me thinking. Are there masses of monthly donors out there who have been loyal over a long period of time who are being ignored? Are there throngs of generous, loyal donors out there who go un-thanked and forgotten? How many of them would like a personal update on the impact of their gifts? How many would just like to hear “thank you for your generosity and loyalty?” They don’t want a mug or a pen. They want to feel valued and needed.
Is the fact that their monthly gifts feel “small” that no one in the organization is really paying attention to the cumulative impact of their gift over time from ‘that small monthly donor?”
What are your thoughts? I’d love to hear from you.