Online donors have established their presence in the last few years. So if the party is happening with or without us, the golden question is, “How do I join the party?”
Ok, there are many answers to that question and everyone has an opinion. So, rather than putting in my two cents about websites, blogs, web video, and everything that is social media, let’s reflect on the article by Rich P and discuss the things we should NOT do.
1) Do NOT make anything hard to find. When establishing a web presence make sure transparency is key. If you have your books open for all to see, make them easy to find along with your nonprofits’ contact information. Donors give to those they trust. It’s that simple.
2) “We are not set-up for online donations, our website is not equipt for it, our bank accounts were set-up years ago before ‘all this’, so we are just going to wait for online donors to contact us and we can get donations the old fashioned way.” How can I say this politely… No. This is sadly not the case. Online donors are called online donors for a reason. If someone wants to donate online, make it a painless process. Do NOT make donating difficult.
3) Donors like to be thanked. The greatest thing you can say to the Chef who cooked the magnificent meal is “thank you, I really enjoyed it.” Donors delight in the same sentiment. Priscilla, a Chicago-native donor, donates to multiple organizations. She illustrates this point by saying a fast way to lose her as a donor is to offer no engagement and only contact her with a pledge reminder once a year. So, do NOT ignore online donors.
4) Justify the donation for which you are asking. Explain that you can “feed a child for a day with your $5 donation,” do NOT simply ask for a dollar amount.
5) Personalize it. If you send out a mass thank you, it will be greeted as a mass thank you. So do NOT offend the Chef, thank him by name and thank him for the specific meal he prepared.
6) Online donors are part of the web 2.0 which is all about community engagement. So be involved, take part, and engage people. Nothing ends a party like the lack of a host, so do NOT be absent.
The internet likes you. It really does, so befriend it. Spend some time together. You’ll be amazed at what you can collectively accomplish.