You check into your hotel. The reception in the lobby is wonderful. You feel special, appreciated and somehow – important to them.
A high room – overlooking the ocean. A handwritten, personal note from the General Manager himself! Wow. A FRUIT PLATTER!!
After dismissing the sweating cheese as owing to humidity in the room, ignoring the stale cashew as normal for an un-roasted nut, and devouring the dates and dried apricots; you notice that the strawberry is green on the bits that should all be red. That’s when it all falls apart…
The crackers are stale, the strawberry is rotten, the cheese is sweating and the handwritten note is pre-printed.
And the reason I decided to share this is not an instinctive desire to notice, and then rant about things that are wrong with the world. I realised that it’s an important lesson for fundraisers.
Set + Forget = Donor – Care.
In fact, set and forget Donor Care and your programme will eventually be minus Donors.
How to Keep Donor Care caring .
Some Suggestions – Please contribute to this short list:
- Segmentation. If you could give all your supporters all of your love, you would. Since you can’t personally thank every individual who donates to you, you must compromise. Segment your audience and give the most important people the most loving stewardship.
- Plan + Process Design. If you suddenly receive a large gift, or a Bequest out of the blue, make sure you know how your organisation is going to respond. If your programme is established, Plan for the phases along the supporter’s journey.
- Make sure the supporter is at the heart of everything you do. If your programme automates responses across the board, you are essentially treating people like numbers.
- FINALLY: Don’t let your fundraisers and staff to leave a thank you gift sitting in a hotel room for days on end next to a pre-printed thank you card from your manager!
I’d love to hear stories of appreciation and neglect from the charity sector. Share your tales of love and woe…