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: