Donors want to know how your campaign is progressing, and ultimately, what you have done with their donation! Status Updates are a great way to update all of your supporters all at once.
In this section, we'll look at what makes an effective status update and why you should use them to strengthen the relationships with your donors.
When you create a Status Update, everyone who supported your campaign - as a donor or as a fundraiser - will receive the status update via email. You can make your Status Updates very dynamic with images, links, and more.
Ways to Use Status Updates to Build Relationships
Major campaign milestones
Send out a status update when you've hit 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%! Donors like to see you be successful - that's why they donate! By showing them your progress towards success throughout the campaign, it could encourage a second (or third!) gift.
Every donor receives an automated thank you email once their donation is processed, but you should thank them again once the campaign is over.
Send out a thank you Status Update to everyone who supported your organization throughout the process. Explain what you'll be doing with the funds raised again, and how their support helped you achieve your mission. By explaining to your donors exactly what you'll be doing with the funds raised, you'll be seen as a more trustworthy organization because of the transparency you have with your supporters. This leads to a longer mutually beneficial relationship with proper stewardship.
Once you have used the funds, now is a good time to send out another Status Update! Show your supporters exactly how you used their funds with visuals and a quick story. Then, ask them to follow you on Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.), so they can continue to learn how their donation supports your organization.
This continues to reinforce that you are a trustworthy organization - you told your supporters what you were planning on doing with the funds raised with your Thank You, and now you're following through with proof that you did it.
Did you receive a matching sponsor? Are you picking a raffle winner? Use a Status Update to broadcast a new component of your campaign to entice additional support. It's a great way to let fundraisers know of a new reason to contact their networks.
A Change to Your Fundraising Needs
After you started your campaign, the story you told originally could change - and that's alright! Organizations change over time, as do your fundraising needs. A Status Update is a great way to tell donors there is a necessary shift in your fundraising needs.
Maybe you were raising money to purchase a new van for your animal shelter, but in the middle of your campaign, you found out one of your animals needs a life-saving surgery. The most pressing fundraising need at the moment is the life-saving surgery. Use a Status Update to shift your story, and still remain trustworthy to your donors.
You're fundraising to offset the costs of new rescue animals you just brought in
We did it!
October 11, 2016
Together, we have raised enough money to cover the Green Mountain Mix Mob's initial veterinary costs, their first month's worth of food, and other costs associated with bringing these scrappy goats and sheep to their permanent home at VINE Sanctuary.
We actually raised twice what we hoped to raise during this week-long campaign, and that's very lucky because our initial estimates of the costs of veterinary care and special food were probably too low. In the week that the Mix Mob have been at the sanctuary, we've observed that one additional goat may have arthritis and that the two 14-year-old sheep (the brown pair at the front of the photo below) have some trouble chewing. So, that's one more member of the mob who probably will need medication. We also will need to special-order pelleted feed that can be made into a mush for the elders in addition to the fortified grains we knew we would need to buy.
All of which is to say THANK YOU to everyone who contributed to this urgent campaign to welcome a beleaguered but unbroken group of goats and sheep to VINE Sanctuary. Thanks to your generosity, we can buy them everything they need without breaking our budget!
We say it all the time, and it's really true: It takes a community to run a sanctuary. We're so grateful to the members of our extended community, old and new, who stepped up to help our on-site staff meet the challenges posed by the sudden arrival of the Green Mountain Mix Mob!