How to Welcome New Donors

Bob Cryer

Bob Cryer

There are two facts about new donors that should cause fund-raisers to pay special attention. 

The first is that the majority of new donors never give a second gift. A new donor probably saw or heard something that attracted them to your nonprofit. Their initial donation is like putting a toe into the water prior to deciding whether or not to jump in. If the water is too chilly, the person moves on to something else. If a donor doesn’t receive a response that gives them a warm feeling about your nonprofit, that will probably be the last donation that your nonprofit sees from that donor. 

The second fact is that the dollar amount that a new donor typically gives as their first donation is likely to be a small fraction of what they might give if they get the right kind of reception and decide to make that new nonprofit one of their favorite charities. 

One of the best fundraising investments that a nonprofit can make is to treat each new donor as if they were a major donor. Take the time to reach out personally to a new donor to give them a warm welcome and make them feel really good about their donation. Focus your attention on getting to know the donor as a person and how to make them feel welcome and appreciated rather than trying to force a tutorial about your nonprofit onto the new donor. If the donor gets a warm and friendly welcome, they are much more likely to become a repeat donor that might move towards giving to you at the level that they reserve for their most favored charities.

Author:  Bob Cryer,  Executive Coaches of Orange County,  www.ECofOC.org