Don't overlook the importance of sending thank you letters out to the generous donors and volunteers. Whether you reach your fundraising goal or not, it's vital to take the time to say thank you to those who gave of their time and/or money to help your charity raise the money it needs to operate and provide services in your community.
Tip#1: Timely Thank You Letters
Once you bring a fundraising campaign to a close, you're probably exhausted. It's tempting to take some time to rest, or to focus your energies on other projects that might have been neglected when you were focused on your fundraiser. However, it's important to remember that your fundraising campaign isn't complete until the thank you letters have been sent. It's a good idea to complete and send all thank you letters within one week of the conclusion of the campaign.
Tip #2: Personalize Thank You Letters
It's important to personally recognize your donors and volunteers. Avoid sending thank you letters that look and sound like form letters. If it's feasible, hand write thank you notes. If there are too many people to thank with hand written letters, at least draft personal notes to your most active volunteers and donors who give at the highest levels. For everyone else, create a professional letter that is computer generated and hand signed. It's a nice touch to jot a personal note or an additional hand written "thank you" on the bottom of these types of letters.
Tip #3: Share the Results
People like to see how their gifts of money and time make a difference. Share the overall results of the campaign in the thank you letters you sent out. You can report statistics such as the total amount of money raised, the quantity of volunteer hours, the programs that will receive funding, and/or other information as appropriate. When your donors see your overall results, they'll feel validating by seeing the greater good to which their donation will be associated. Seeing final totals can also encourage current donors to give more next time.
By following these three tips for effective fundraising thank you letters, you'll be on your way to cultivating strong volunteer and donor relationships that can help your charity increase it's good works and enjoy long term success. Stay focused on the fact that letting your donors know that you appreciate them today will go a long way toward helping them feel comfortable with giving to your organisation again in the future.