“You are the Winner”: Fundraising lessons learned

blogpic_1-18-16A old friend of mine who works at a Catholic charity shared a letter he received from a donor several weeks ago. It read, in part:

“Last year I sent out letters to about 12 charities that I gave $50.00 or more to, and requested they acknowledge my letter regarding not sending any mail during the year with cards, crosses, statues, holy pictures and other little gifts I could not use.

“All  of you replied you would do that for me. I only wanted one receipt for the donation I gave once a year, [and] nothing more, as I was getting tons of stuff that I could not keep and also cost you guys money anyway.

“Well ‘YOU ARE THE WINNER’, they kept sending me things all year. Since you did not, [you] get a donation of $600.00.”

Lessons learned? Respect your donors’ wishes, listen to what they are saying, and act accordingly to satisfy them.


Reciprocity. Closure. Thank you.

Has this ever ha13.11.18_graphicppened to you?

The Big Event (wedding, birthday, graduation, etc.) comes off to perfection and all involved enjoy themselves immensely. Warm emotions abound over the hospitality, the guests of honor, the hosts, the fellow guests, and so forth. You give a generous gift to celebrate and honor the stars and…

Nothing. No word of thanks. Not even a confirmation that the gift arrived.

Leaves a hole at the end of the experience, doesn’t it?

The importance of thanks goes beyond mere etiquette (although much can be said for Continue reading