Created with Sketch.
Friday5 with Tammy Zonker
6 minutes | Jan 19, 2021
5 minutes | Jan 5, 2020
E10: Securing The Elusive 2nd Gift
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker It’s Fridaaaaaay! And I’m Tammy Zonker, bringing you Friday5 on ZTV. I’m here in beautiful Amsterdam, at Kessens – a lovely café just steps from the home of Anne Frank and the remarkable Anne Frank Museum. I’ve spent a good part of this two-week European get-a-way learning and strategizing about fundraising. I know…… but it’s my passion – don’t judge me. One of my an ‘ah ha’ moments is about donors; and our obsession with donor acquisition and retention. Donor acquisition and retention are important – even vital! But it would serve us to become equally (if not MORE) obsessed about the importance of securing the SECOND gift. It’s a critical nuance of any donor retention program. Let me tell you why. As we know from the annual AFP Fundraising Effectiveness Project, we only retain about 20% of our first-time donors each year. That number is shockingly and embarrassingly low. However, the research shows that once a first-time donor gives a second gift, 63% of them will give again. Further, first time donors who give a second gift within 90-daysof their first gift have a lifetime giving value that’s nearly DOUBLE those donors who give at the 12-month mark. If we can secure the SECOND gift, the third gift, fourth gift and beyond will more likely come. That is, of course if we’re properly thanking and stewarding our donors. Timely, accurate and sincere gift acknowledgment letters, thank you calls from board members or your CEO, reporting back to the donor on the impact of their giving (both in stats AND stories). This research data defies what I hear so often, which is “We can’t ask again, they already gave this year.” More giving begets more giving – IF we can ensure the donor continues to feel the warm glow, the joy of giving, the satisfaction of knowing they made a difference. The dopamine rush. Dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin and endorphins are the quartet responsible for our happiness and pleasure. The act of giving and response of gratitude stimulates production of these brain chemicals. Talk about building the base for sustainability – THIS IS THE OPPORTUNITY! And I for one, I believe donors can transform the world. I embrace enduring relationships built on shared-values and passion over the what-have-you-done-for-me-lately numbers game. I refuse to disappoint donors with lackluster gratitude, uninspiring engagement and inconsistent impact reporting. I don’t believe donors belong to us, but instead our cause belongs to them. And when 80% of our first-time donors, are looking elsewhere for joy and purpose – we have failed. Why do we under-resource donor retention programs? Why do we assign the “general donor pool” to our newer fundraising staff and give them little structure, training and budget to effectively retain first time donors? Why don’t most of us have a robust 1st time donor engagement and retention program? Our first-time donors fill the pipeline to monthly giving programs, leadership giving, major gifts and legacy giving. It’s one of the best investments we can make. I’ll be speaking on this topic at AFP Congress in Toronto, November 25th through the 28th. Likewise, we train on this topic and so much more every single month in my Fundraising Transformer Community. That’s it for Friday5 on ZTV in Amsterdam. I’ll see you stateside next week on Friday5. Have a great weekend! If you liked this Friday5 episode, make a comment below and share it and tag @tammyzonker. If you’d like to participate in LIVE training with me every single month and get access to loads of tools and templates, join my Fundraising Transformers online community at https://www.tammyzonker.com/transformers/ Keep on transforming your fundraising, so you can transform the world. See you next Friday! If you’re on Instagram, follow me @tammyzonker, where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel. #Friday5 with @tammyzonker on #ZTV #IntentionalFundraiser #FundraisingTransformers #nonprofits #donorlove
7 minutes | Jan 5, 2020
E9: 5 Reasons Why I Love This Book-The Life-Changing Power of Gratitude
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker Guess what day it is! Yup, it’s Fridaaaaay. And I’m Tammy Zonker bringing you #Friday5 on #ZTV by the Sea! Today I’m coming to you from Noordwijk Aan Zee — or — “Noordwijk by the Sea” just outside Amsterdam where the Resource Alliance IFC took place this week. IFC Holland is one of the best, truly international fundraising conferences in the world. We’re here for a couple of weeks learning, retreating and strategic planning; cause that’s what we do on vacation! Today, I want to share 5 reasons why I love this book: The Life-Changing Power of Gratitude by Marc Reklau. First, let me share WHY I think this book is important to us in the fundraising profession. As you well know, for most of us — our donor retention rate is terrible: on average, we in the U.S. only retain about 45% of our annual donors and only 20% of our first-time donors. Likewise, our development STAFF retention rate is no great shakes either! According to research conducted by Penelope Burk of Cygnus Research and Dr. Adrian Sargeant of the Institute for Sustainable Philanthropy, the main reasons donors stop giving to us are that they don’t feel appreciated, or feel that their gifts are making a difference. In other words, GRATITUDE could go a long way towards keeping our donors and making a bigger difference. Watch this episode of Friday5 to learn the 5 reasons why I love this book: The Life-Changing Power of Gratitude by Marc Reklau. If you liked this Friday5 episode, make a comment below and share it and tag @tammyzonker. If you’d like to participate in LIVE training with me every single month and get access to loads of tools and templates, join my Fundraising Transformers online community at https://www.tammyzonker.com/transformers/ Keep on transforming your fundraising, so you can transform the world. See you next Friday! If you’re on Instagram, follow me @tammyzonker, where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel. #Friday5 with @tammyzonker on #ZTV #IntentionalFundraiser #FundraisingTransformers #nonprofits #donorlove
5 minutes | Jan 4, 2020
E8: 5 Dos & Don’ts for Your Year-End Campaign
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker It’s Fridaaaaay!! And I’m Tammy Zonker, bringing you Friday5 on ZTV. Where I bring you 5 minutes or five ideas on how to transform your fundraising, so you can transform the world. And I have a special offer for you, at the end of this post – so stick around! But first, today’s topic: Five Dos & Don’ts for Successful Year End Campaigns. This is a really important topic, because 30% of all annual fund giving happens in December. So, there’s a lot riding on getting it right. #1 DO tell the story of a single person (or animal, if you’re working in animal welfare). Testing shows that going deep with ONE story, makes the problem feel more solvable. Telling the story of the MASSIVE need, can leave the prospective donor feeling hopeless. As if their gift won’t make a measurable difference. So, DON’T tell the story of the masses in need of services or support. DO tell the story of ONE and your donors will more likely give and feel great about it. #2 DO have a match or challenge gift to inspire increased giving. People will stretch a little further and dig a little deeper if they know their gift will be matched. DON’T miss this opportunity. #3 DO segment your data. Segment by giving history, last gift amount. Are they a one-time, monthly or major donor? Do they volunteer with you? What’s their specific area of interest in your work? Where do they live? Use this data to inform your campaign messaging, gift levels and impact statements. DON’T ignore the data. #4 DON’T send the same appeal to all donors. DO personalize it: Using my first name versus calling me “friend”. Listen, if you don’t address me by my first name, we’re not friends. #5 DO run a Multichannel Campaign. Leverage not only direct mail, but also email, social media, online ads. Maybe even billboards, in-kind radio PSAs or on-air reads, pop-up events, contests. Choose channels where your donors or prospective donors spend time (to the extent you have the budget). DON’T rely on direct mail alone or email alone. Speaking of multichannel campaigns, we have a special offer running for a limited time. Some of you are starting to plan your year-end campaign and feeling a bit challenged by how to take it to the next level. If that’s you, we have a self-paced eCourse called, Build a Multichannel Year-End Campaign that Raises a lot More Money. You can check it out at tammyzonker.com/raisemoremoney It’s a huge value at just $249. The 19 BONUS templates and checklists alone are worth way more than that! Or you can get FREE access to the eCourse, by joining my Fundraising Transformers Community. That’s where you get LIVE online training with me every single month, access to a private library of on-demand training, tools, templates and more. It’s $1 to start, and $49 each month after that. You can unsubscribe anytime you want – but my goal is to delight you. So, you never want to leave! Check it out at tammyzonker.com/transformers Those are your 5 Dos & Don’ts for Successul Year End Campaigns. There are many more DOs & DON’TS, but this is Friday5 – not Friday50!! If you found this helpful, please make a comment below and share it in your social media. Keep on transforming your fundraising, so you can transform the world. I’ll see you next Friday, where I’ll be coming to you from Amsterdam, where IFC Holland is happening! Have an amazing weekend. Keep on transforming your fundraising, so you can transform the world. See you next Friday! If you’re on Instagram, follow me @tammyzonker, where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel. #Friday5 with @tammyzonker on #ZTV #IntentionalFundraiser #FundraisingTransformers #nonprofits #donorlove
7 minutes | Jan 4, 2020
E7: How to Engage and Leverage Your Board to Improve Fundraising Results
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker A lot of you have written to me about your boards. Essentially asking how to better engage and leverage them to improve your fundraising results. Some of you are really, really frustrated with your board members. And undoubtedly, some board members are really, really frustrated with you! Let’s not forget; board members are amazing. They chose your organization. They love your mission so much, they’re giving their most precious asset: their time and hopefully their money as well (which is another topic for another day). We have to remember that as adult learners, we need to know and buy-in to the WHY before we’ll take action. Board members need to know that what you’re asking them to do will make a measurable difference. So let’s try this: We’re heading into the holiday season. Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Why not ask our board members to participate in a gratitude campaign? Calling and thanking donors for their loyal support, letting them know how they are changing lives. Some of you may be thinking, “Yeah, yeah Tammy. I’ve tried that before and had low participation from the board.” I understand. But maybe you didn’t start with WHY. Here’s what the data from Penelope Burk of Cygnus Research says: Donors Want Gratitude Calls from Board Members 95% of survey respondents would appreciate a Board Member calling to say thank you within a few days of making a gift. 85% would definitely or probably support the charity again if this call happened. 86% would definitely or probably give a larger gift if they received a thank you call. So even if it’s been more than a “few days” since they made their last gift. A warm, sincere thank you call from your board members will make a difference. Why not host a thank-a-thon with your board members and other leadership volunteers? You could do it in early November just prior to Thanksgiving here in the U.S. or just after Thanksgiving for my Canadian friends. There is never a wrong time for gratitude and donor love! Will you get every board member to participate enthusiastically? No, you won’t. And that’s okay. Celebrate those that DO participate and have them share about their experience at the next board meeting. Watch what happens. I was part of a donor thank-a-thon at The Children’s Center in Detroit recently. After about 90 minutes of smiling and dialing, and thanking donors, we all reconvened in the conference room to debrief. One of the volunteers said he called a man on his list, who lives on the east coast. This man has been giving to The Children’s Center for years. He asked him, “What’s your connection to The Children’s Center?” And the donor shared that he was born and raised in Detroit. When he was in the 4th grade, around 1957 – he received services from The Children’s Center. And his therapist, Ms. Williams, changed his life. Did the donor feel good about receiving that thank you call? Yes! Did the volunteer feel good about making that call? Yes! Yes! Yes! Start with WHY, when engaging your board. Don’t expect every board member to be on-board. And don’t give up! We’re coming into a season where there’s a whole lot of ASKING going on. Be the organization that also does a lot of THANKING – and leverage your incredible board members to share the love. We’ve created a special offer for you for a limited time. If you’re starting to plan your year-end campaign and feeling a bit overwhelmed with where to start – we have self-paced eCourse called, Build A Multichannel Year-End Campaign that Raises a lot More Money! You can check it out at tammyzonker.com/raisemoremoney Or you can get instant access to this year-end campaign eCourse for FREE! By becoming a member of my Fundraising Transformers Community. That’s where you get LIVE online training from me every single month, access to a private library of on-demand training, tools, templates, and more. It’s $1 to start and $49 each month after that. You can unsubscribe anytime you want – but my goal is to delight you. So, you never want to leave! Check it out at tammyzonker.com/transformers That’s it for Friday5. If you found this helpful, please make a comment and share it on your social media and tag me @tammyzonker. Keep on transforming your fundraising, so you can transform the world. See you next Friday! If you’re on Instagram, follow me @tammyzonker, where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel. #Friday5 with @tammyzonker on #ZTV #IntentionalFundraiser #FundraisingTransformers #nonprofits #donorlove
6 minutes | Jan 4, 2020
E6: 5 Features Of A Stellar Year-End Fundraising Campaign
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker Today I want to share 5 features of a stellar year-end campaign that raises lots of money for your cause. Feature #1 Leverage a match gift. You really want to announce that gifts to your year-end campaign will be matched dollar-for-dollar up to X amount of dollars. Not only does the dollar value of the match gift go straight to the bottomline. But it truly inspires and motivates other prospective donors to stretch a little further, and dig a little deeper to make their most generous gift. It can be a match gift from ONE person, ONE corporate or ONE foundation. It can also be a match from a small group of people. Perhaps your board, or another group of five to ten gifts combined to make a collective match. I do suggest setting a minimum gift value to participate — otherwise you’ll have a long scroll of names that takes up a lot of precious real estate on your direct mail piece. I’m often asked how large does a match gift need to be to be effective? I’m also asked, can a match gift be TOO big? I’d love to see your match gift at the $25,000 or higher. And yes, the higher the better. You just have to be sure the mission-need (or case) presented in your appeal is bigger than the match! If you have a super-big match gift (really good for you!) you could even match every gift 2-to-1! Feature #2 Use donor-centric language. More YOU language, than WE language. Conveying what the DONOR will make happen with their generous support. In fact, the more you connect the donor or prospective donor with someone you serve AND the LESS you talk about your organization – the more money you will raise. Feature #3 Tell the story of one. Your appeal is about your donor, his or her values and ONE person in need. Your appeal is an opportunity for the prospective donor to get related to one sick child, one abused puppy, one lonely senior, one wounded warrior, one 1st generation college student, one story of injustice, one woman fleeing domestic violence. With an invitation to make a difference through giving. Featuring a massive number of those in need can be overwhelming and leave the donor feeling that it’s a hopeless situation, that their gift surely won’t make a big enough difference. Feature #4 Segment your data. Strategically segmenting your data, and variable printing giving options base on the amount of the donors last gift, will help you upgrade gift values. So, if my last gift was $100, you may ask me to consider making a gift of $100, $125, or $150. And of course offer, that fill in the blank giving option. Feature #5 Consistency. You year end campaign message and imagery needs to be consistent across all channels. Direct mail. Email. Social media. Your custom landing page. And any other channels you may be employing. Here’s your recap of the Five Features of a Stellar Year-End Fundraising Campaign: Leverage a match gift Use donor-centric language Tell the story of one Segment your data Consistency, consistency, consistency I hope this Friday5 was helpful. If it was, make a comment below or share it and tag me @tammyzonker. And if you liked this, you would LOVE our eCourse “Build A Multichannel Year-End Fundraising Campaign That Raises A Lot More Money!” It’s 5 self-paced modules with step-by-step training, features several successful campaign case studies, includes 19 year-end campaign templates and worksheets (valued at $3,795) and access to our private Facebook group for Q&A. It’s a HUGE value at only $249. Get instant access to this eCourse now! But, here’s the thing: YOU CAN GET THIS ECOURSE FOR FREE! Yup! You read that right! If you become a member of my monthly Fundraising Transformers Community, you’ll get the 5-module, self-paced Year-End Fundraising Campaign eCourse, and all 19 tools, templates and planning worksheets for FREE! Plus, you get LIVE online training with me every month, and access to my private Facebook group where I answer your fundraising questions and share insights into fundraising best practices, strategy and more! Just visit Fundraising Transformers and sign up for $1 to start and pay just $49 each month after that! You’ll then also get immediate access to my multichannel year-end fundraising eCourse. If you liked this Friday5 episode, make a comment below and share it. If you’d like to participate in LIVE training with me every single month – and get access to loads of tools and templates, join my Fundraising Transformers online community at tammyzonker.com/transformers. If you’re on Instagram, follow me @tammyzonker where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel.
7 minutes | Jan 4, 2020
E5: 5 Simple Practices for Gift Officers
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker Anyone who manages a portfolio of donors can benefit from these practices. In many ways they’re common sense, but I assure you – they are not common practice. And believe me, I’ve learned some of them the hard way! #1 Be knowledgeable about current events Listen to NPR, CNN, your favorite local news channel. Read your local paper and business publications, as well as national publications. The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today. Digital subscriptions aren’t that expensive and make reading something you can do right from your phone or tablet. Now, there is a fine line between being knowledgeable and being a know-it-all. Remember, you are Switzerland most of the time – meaning, you are neutral. Especially in these turbulent political times. This reading equips you to engage well in conversation and establishes you as an intelligent, well-read and credible person. #2 Know your donors Ask open-ended questions. Listen to their answers. Notice the little things. Act thoughtfully based on what you learn. What time of day do they prefer to meet? I worked with a high-net worth gentleman who owns an investment firm. He doesn’t like to meet during trading hours. So, when I propose a meeting it’s never between 9:30 & 4 Eastern time weekdays. I’ve worked with an incredible 85-year-old lady who’s a night owl. I know never to call her before 10AM. There’s another gentlemen who’s an Executive VP at a Fortune 500 company. If I want to meet with him, I know it’s 7AM for breakfast at his private club a few blocks from his office. He orders the omelet with a side of blueberries. Notice the small things. Know their children’s names, their pet’s names, their favorite flower. Not necessarily by asking direct questions, but by observing and listening intently as they talk about their life. It shows your donors that you care. It says I see you. I value you. You are more than a source of contributions. They deserve that respect and care. #3 Keep it clean Keep your car clean. Keep your office clean. Keep your language clean. Let’s break that down. Keep your car clean. Even if you don’t PLAN to have a donor in your car, spontaneous requests can happen. Once I met with an incredibly generous donor, Marilyn in our office. At the end of the meeting she shared that her husband dropped her off to meet with me, before heading to the Tiger’s game. Could I give her a ride or call her a taxi? Well, of course I drove her the four blocks to the ballpark. Thank goodness my car was clean. How many times has someone asked you for a ride, and you had to quickly unload the passenger seat of materials, fast food wrappers and water bottles? It happens. You’re busy. But you need to keep your car clean for these unexpected occasions. Keep your office clean. How many times does a donor drop by, because they were in the neighborhood? I’ve even had planned donor meetings with a scheduled conference room, but when I arrive another meeting has run over – and we end up meeting in my office. Is your office donor-ready? Or would you be embarrassed by the clutter or confidential information visible on your desk? What’s written on your whiteboard? Keep your language clean. Seems so obvious, right? But what if your donor routinely uses colorful language? Does that give you permission to fly the f-bomb flag? No, it does not. It will diminish your professionalism and credibility in the eyes of your donor – consciously or unconsciously. It just will. And even if you don’t agree with me – is it worth the risk? PAUSE PAUSE #4 Stay positive Never let insider politics and cultural frustrations seep into donor conversations. No gossiping. No complaining. Ever. #5 Every donor interaction, every outreach contact needs to be entered into your donor database. Obviously, it serves you and your ability to reference all the details and activities, but it serves your donor. With development staff turning over every 18 to 24 months, it can get annoying for donors to share “one more time” why they love and support your organization. If you really love your donors and your organization, you owe it to them to keep good records. It’s not easy. I struggle sometimes too. But it is important. Those are 5 simple practices for fundraising gift officers. I hope you enjoyed this episode of Friday5. If you did, please comment below and share on social media and be sure to tag me @TammyZonker so others can see your comments. If you liked this Friday5 episode, make a comment below and share it. If you’d like to participate in LIVE training with me every single month – and get access to loads of tools and templates, join my Fundraising Transformers online community at tammyzonker.com/transformers. If you’re on Instagram, follow me @tammyzonker where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel.
8 minutes | Jan 4, 2020
E4: Be Fed Up or Step Up
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker Welcome to Friday5 on ZTV! I’m coming to you today to talk about the alarming cover story published by the Chronicle of Philanthropy. The headline reads, “Why Fundraisers Are Fed Up.” It breaks my heart to read that 51% of fundraisers plan to leave their jobs in the next two years, and even more so that 30% of them plan to leave fundraising altogether. The Chronicle’s Harris Poll reports three primary causes for these planned departures: 85% of fundraisers feel tremendous pressure to meet unrealistic fundraising goals. 55% said they “often feel unappreciated” for their work. 85% see little opportunity for promotion within their organizations. And consistent concerns about compensation, frustrating culture and lack of succession planning. Believe me when I say, I understand. As a fundraising practitioner and trainer for nearly 20 years – I have walked in those shoes. I know the hand-to-mouth, treadmill culture. The “What have you done for me lately?” mentality. The “It’s never enough” dark cloud that can dampen our spirit and leave us feeling restless and disillusioned. The nonprofit scarcity mindset can cause us to forget just how powerful we really are. So, I have to ask the question: Who are WE in the matter? We can’t always control the incoming demands and pressures. But we CAN control how we respond to them. Fundraisers, here’s what I know about YOU: You are brave. It takes courage to tell the tough stories of your work. You are brave as you coax-out your donor’s stories – and encourage them to “go there.” AND you do what very few people are willing to do – or have the courage to do – ASK FOR MONEY. You are influencers. Your job is to guide and influence your supporters as they explore how they want to make a difference. You ask questions about what they value. You offer solutions that marry the donor’s desires to the needs of those you serve. You develop meaningful partnerships that benefit all involved. You are negotiators. Through thoughtful conversation, you co-create mutually beneficial agreements. The perfect balance of what your donors dream of accomplishing and what your organizations really need. You have heart. You love your causes. You love your donors. You want to transform the world. So why aren’t we effectively using our finely tuned relationship skills with our Boards and Executive Management? Just like our donors, board members and nonprofit execs want the same thing we do: to make a measurable difference through mission impact. And just as we influence our donors with stories and data, we can influence our boards and execs. Not in a confrontational, “us versus them” way, but rather in a solution-focused “you and me” way – the same manner in which we engage and enroll our donors. Denny Young, a well-known Toronto fundraising pro says, as fundraisers, “We often don’t understand how much of our work is going to be a political process of getting people within our organization on our side.” I say, don’t throw in the towel. Lean into our profession’s issues leveraging all of your donor development and stewardship skills. In other words, we need to step up. Now, before you start crafting a fiery, “Tammy, you don’t understand” email – let me give you an example of how you can respond to unrealistic expectations and cultural frustrations in a productive way. The Chronicle feature reports, “78% of survey respondents wish they had more time to spend meeting with supporters.” It’s no surprise, the more QUALITY time you spend with your donors the more of them you’ll retain (not to mention increased lifetime value). Quality time: meaning you’re thanking donors, reporting the impact of their gifts, engaging them in the work as appropriate. But how do you find time for these quality visits? If you’re managing a portfolio of donors, this must be a top priorities. Evaluate your calendar and identify the non-essential activities that keep you from making donor visits. Penelope Burk of Cygnus Research says, that on average gift officers only spend 55% of their 40-hour week actually doing their job. Are there too many internal meetings? I’m sure you add value in those meetings, but would you add MORE value to your organization by powerfully engaging donors? Uh, absolutely yes! Try this for a month: Color code the meetings on your calendar. Green = top priorities. Yellow = important tasks. Red = activities that aren’t your core job accountabilities. Is 60% of your calendar focused on green needle-moving priorities? Talk with your manager about how you could reduce yellow and red activities, so you can spend more time with donors – and you’ll be seeing more-green in no time! That’s just ONE example of how we can push through barriers to fundraising success and job satisfaction. I’m wise enough to know that not EVERY organization will embrace these conversations and sometimes it makes sense to leave – but SOME will. Isn’t it worth the effort? Then, if you choose to move on, you can leave knowing you gave it your all. You are stronger than you think. You have more power than you know. And you have all the heart and determination you need to rise to the occasion. To read the full article on this topic, subscribe to my blog The Transformist. And if you want even more strategies about how to be a high-performance fundraiser, sign-up to be notified when The Intentional Fundraiser High Performance System launches. That’s Intentional HPS, High Performance system. That’s it for Friday5. See you next time! If you liked this Friday5 episode, make a comment below and share it. If you’d like to participate in LIVE training with me every single month – and get access to loads of tools and templates, join my Fundraising Transformers online community at tammyzonker.com/transformers. If you’re on Instagram, follow me @tammyzonker where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel.
5 minutes | Jan 4, 2020
E3: 5 Attributes of a GREAT Gift Acknowledgment Letter
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker It’s Fridaaay! I’m Tammy Zonker bringing you Friday5 on ZTV. Friday5 is where I talk with you for 5 minutes or bring you 5 ideas, strategies, or tips for transforming your fundraising. Today’s Friday5 features FIVE attributes of a great gift acknowledgment letter. Sincere letters that leave your donors feeling appreciated and knowing their gifts are truly making a difference. In my monthly Fundraising Transformers Community, we do a 90-minute webinar on the Fine Art of Thanking Donors. Check it out at tammyzonker.com/transformers But for today, here are the Five Attributes of a Great Gift Letter: Attribute #1. The gift acknowledgment letter includes a quote from a grateful client – someone whose life has been changed thanks to generous supporters. A grateful mom or dad. A student. A happy family who just gave an abandoned dog their forever home. Maybe a teacher whose 2nd-grade class just had a blast touring your museum. Here’s an example of a grateful client quote, “I don’t know what’s ahead for our family, but I know we aren’t alone. We have The Children’s Center.” Tonya, Mother of three Attribute #2 A warm and personal salutation. Using the donor’s first name (unless you know they prefer a more formal salutation such as Mr., Mrs. Dr., for example). If we are truly working to establish a close personal relationship with our donors, we should address them in a personal manner. Attribute #3 Donor-centric. Brilliant Tom Ahern taught us well when he said the donor is the hero. Our gift acknowledgment letters should be about the donor – not about how great our organization is! So, for every single time we use the words, “we, our, us, or the name of our organization) we should reference the donor at least 3 times. 3:1 words like you, your, and saying the donor’s name. Connecting the donor directly to the impact of their gift. For example: “You are amazing. Your generosity is helping children heal, hope and dream again” versus “Your gift will help us heal children so they can dream again.” Which brings me to attribute #4. Include impact statements in your gift acknowledgment letters. Let your amazing donors know the impact of their gifts. What difference will their generous gifts make in the lives of those served? Impact is easier to convey if the gift is restricted for a specific purpose, right?. But what if it’s an unrestricted operating gift? Here’s an example of an impact statement for an unrestricted gift. “You turn trauma into triumph, fear into courage and despair into determination every single day” or “You are erasing the traces of trauma from the hearts and minds of our wounded warriors, like John.” And last but not least, attribute #5. Your letters should be hand-signed, with a handwritten personal note or p.s. on every single letter. AND the gift acknowledgment letter should be mailed within 48 to 72 hours of gift receipt. Those are the 5 Attributes of a Great Gift Acknowledgment Letter. Letters that convey how incredible our donors are – and inspire them to give again and again. That’s it for Friday5 on #ZTV. Have an awesome weekend! If you liked this Friday5 episode, make a comment below and share it. If you’d like to participate in LIVE training with me every single month – and get access to loads of tools and templates, join my Fundraising Transformers online community at tammyzonker.com/transformers. If you’re on Instagram, follow me @tammyzonker where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel.
4 minutes | Jan 4, 2020
E2: 5 Ways To Retain Your Donors
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker This is an important topic. Here in the U.S., we’re only retaining 45% of our overall donors each year. It’s even worse for first-time donors. With an average retention rate of only 20%. Instead of obsessing about finding NEW donors, how about we keep the ones we have. Retaining donors can reduce our fundraising cost-per-dollar raised, AND it helps us maximize lifetime giving values. If you liked this episode, check out my online community of Fundraising Transformers at tammyzonker.com/transformers. That’s where I go LIVE with online training and coaching every single month. I’d love to hear from you. So, make a comment below. Did you like this? Was this helpful? If it was, please share it with others. If you’re on Instagram, follow me on @tammyzonker where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel. #Friday5 with @tammyzonker on #ztv #IntentionalFundraiser #FundraisingTransformers #nonprofits #donorlove
6 minutes | Jan 4, 2020
E1: The Intentional Fundraiser
By Tammy Zonker, Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker I’m so excited to announce that I just launched my new weekly Friday5 Show on Ztv! Every Friday, I’ll be coming to you for 5 minutes or with 5 ideas, tips, or strategies to help you transform your fundraising! In my first episode, I talk with you about your TIME. I don’t know about you, but as a fundraising practitioner, I often find myself leaving the office thinking, “Thank goodness it’s 5 o’clock! Now, I can go home and get some work done!” Right? All the internal meetings and constant interruptions. That’s why I created The Intentional Fundraiser – a Self-Management SYSTEM for High Performance for busy #fundraising professionals like you! In this episode, I share 5 of the 10 strategies you can start using today to take back control of your time by being intentional. To get started on the path to becoming a more Intentional Fundraiser, DOWNLOAD MY FREE Intentional Fundraiser Weekly Planner! If you’re on Instagram, follow me on @tammyzonker where I’ll post each episode every Friday on my Instagram TV channel. #Friday5 with @tammyzonker on #ztv #IntentionalFundraiser #FundraisingTransformers #nonprofits #donorlove
Terms of Service
Your Privacy Choices
© Stitcher 2023