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Craft a thoughtful "Thank You" to enhance your stewardship efforts!
Craft a thoughtful "Thank You" to enhance your stewardship efforts!

Donor stewardship starts with the automatic "Thank You" your donors receive after making their gift!

Suli Calianno avatar
Written by Suli Calianno
Updated over a week ago

In this article, we will cover what constitutes a meaningful "Thank You" message to start the donor stewardship process!

Here is a quick reminder of the two examples we have been using:

Example 1: You're fundraising to offset the costs of new rescue animals you just brought in.

Example 2: You're fundraising for your general fund or annual appeal.

Each donor receives an automated "Thank You" e-mail once their donation is processed on our platform. This is the official start of a new stewardship cycle with your donor - so, you should take some time to craft a meaningful & heartfelt "Thank You".

Your message should, of course, express your appreciation for the donor's support of your campaign, reiterate that their support will have an immense impact on your organization, & highlight how your organization will be utilizing their donation(s).

The "Thank You"Message

You should always include a text "Thank You" message, even if you plan on recording a "Thank You" video or including a "Thank You" image in your communications. Be mindful that not all donors have the same internet capabilities & speeds. Some may not be able to load a video or even an image - so, including a text thank you is incredibly important!

Your message needs to clearly explain to your donors exactly how you will be using the funds raised & how that relates to the campaign story you wrote. By doing this, you will be seen as a more trustworthy organization because of the level of transparency you have with your Supporters. This will lead to a long, mutually beneficial relationship with proper stewardship. 

The "Thank You" Video

A "Thank You" video can really drive the point home around what you are raising funds for, especially if the message is coming from the beneficiary/beneficiaries. Plus, videos always add a bit of flair!

Consider recording a message from the individual/group benefitting from your organization's campaign.

Here are 3 Top Tips for creating an effective video:

  • Keep it short. People tend to lose interest after 60 seconds & may not have time to watch a lengthier video - so, try to keep it to a minute or less!

  • Keep it relevant. Circle back to your Story & what your donors gave to!

  • Keep it authentic. Highlight those that will benefit from your donors' generous contributions.

The "Thank You" Image

If you choose not to record a "Thank You Video", you can opt to include a "Thank You" Image, instead!  

Consider including an image of something that represents the beneficiary. Perhaps, you have a group photo of staff holding up a "Thank You" sign or maybe you would prefer to use a free graphic design program, such as Canva to create your own custom image.

Your image should be a medium-sized, horizontal image, typically 500 pixels by 300 pixels, but no larger than 5MB. 

Here are a couple of examples:

370+ Man Holding Thank You Sign Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free  Images - iStock

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