I put a plant into the ground. Then I forgot about it.
The sun baked it. It drooped. It withered.
Oops! Well, no problem. I’ll just water it now.
Wait, why isn’t it coming back to life?
When your organization ignores a donor for months at a time, you are scorching and burning your relationship.
You may get lucky. Their feelings for you may be so hardy that you can bring the relationship back to life with a really good appeal. Most often, though, you’ll be watering a dead plant and wondering why it isn’t growing.
Real communications are the water of life. Give your donors some water every week, and watch your relationships flower.
Sybil Stershic (@SybilQSM) says
I agree about maintaining the relationship with relevant, viable communication, Dennis, as long as it’s not a continual barrage of solicitations. That’s the issue I’m having now with several nonprofits that are only a direct mail piece away from donor alienation.
Mary Cahalane says
Even solicitations should feel like communication, not harrassment, Sybil. If those solicitations were all about what an amazing thing the donor had it in her power to do – told with a great story – then it stops being a hassle and starts being personal and meaningful.
But too many ARE just “WE NEED MONEY! SEND IT NOW!”. Not very appealing, that.