On #GivingTuesday I received 20+ solicitations.
On Wednesday, the following day, I received only 2 #GivingTuesday updates.
Only 2 organizations thought I would care about the results?
Here is a list of excuses I have heard from friends, clients, colleagues, and nonprofits around the world as to why they did not send an email letting donors know how much they raised from something like #GivingTuesday or an event:
- We only reached 70% of our goal (let me know that and why this effort was important- maybe I will still give)
- I don’t think anyone would notice if we did or didn’t send a #GivingTuesday update (wrong attitude)
- We are busy writing our end-of-year letter and that has to be the priority (if #GivingTuesday is not important enough to do well, don’t do it)
- It didn’t occur to us to do that. (that is no longer a good excuse)
- We don’t really know exactly how much we raised yet (not confidence boosting)
- _____your excuse here______
While I admit that I do notice details like follow up because of professional curiosity, I also take note because it shows me which organizations understand development is not just fundraising.
Please, please, please keep in mind:
- Development is a year-round process that includes asking, acknowledging, thanking, and stewarding donors.
- You should not send out a solicitation until you know how you will acknowledge donations, thank donors 7+ times and whether or not you will follow up with non-respondents.
- Number 2 includes online and social media solicitations. Basic development rules still apply.
- 7+ ways to thank a donor can include an email to everyone with an update
- Development is not brain surgery. In fact, most of it is common sense with a bit of creativity to make it applicable to your nonprofit. Sometimes you are not doing it because you just don’t know that it should be done, but if you have read this far, you now know. Follow up with a #GivingTuesday update (it’s not too late!). Follow up for everything. People can hit delete and they can unsubscribe, but the people who care about you won’t. The people who left you were not going to give to you anyway so let them go and focus on your real prospects and donors.
If you want to learn how Mersky, Jaffe & Associates can improve your development plan and stewardship ideas, email me
Maybe I can start a #GivingTuesdayUpdate as a trend for next year.
Want to read more about #GivingTuesday Results? The Chronicle of Philanthropy has a great article about the amounts raised.