the key to better online donor relationships

Online Donors are raising their hands!


Picture your direct mail marketing program in your head.

How do you determine who gets mailed?
How are you receipting first-time donors?
How many letters and newsletters are you sending a donor in a year?

These are some of the basic questions that are at the core of your direct mail strategy for communicating with donors of your ministry. And you’re probably already thinking about these simple components.

Now picture your online (or “digital”) marketing program, and I’ll ask you the same questions:

Who receives your emails?

Are you just sending to your entire file and hoping your message connects or are you segmenting emails to direct mail donors, new donors and event participants?

Not all donors are created equal in direct mail . . . why should online and digital be any different?

How do you receipt and acknowledge first-time online donors?

Do you receipt your online donors differently than your direct-mail donors?

Through their actions, these donors are indicating a preference by choosing to give their gift online and not put a stamp on an envelope. What are you doing to welcome them and retain them through your digital communication?

How many digital (or online/email) impacts are you doing a year?

Most ministries can easily tell me how many appeals/newsletters they send in a month, yet many have no idea how many emails — let alone if any emails — went out. Your digital strategies deserve the same attention and care.

Each month you should craft campaigns, messaging and specific appeals to connect with your online donors

Digital communication is faster, cheaper and can be more targeted to a donor’s preferences or giving history. Yet, most ministries neglect, spam and ignore their digital donors in ways that would never be done even in the most basic direct mail campaign.

So this Fall, your digital donors will be raising their hands wanting to give, volunteer and share with their social communities the amazing impact your ministry is making.

How are you going to respond? Will you treat online donors differently?

Lindsey Lind
Vice President of eStrategy, Oneicity

(photo credit: rabih)

Lindsey Lind

Lindsey Lind

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