Are you treating your private individual donors like kings and queens? Or are you making them feel neglected? Perhaps you are even annoying them?

It sounds scary – but it might be happening unintentionally!

So I invite you to take a moment to write down all the things you are doing to manage communication with your private individual donors.

I hope it’s a nice list!

Let me tell you two stories to show you what I mean.

Annoying a donor

For this story we go many years back. At the time I was donating a small amount of money (but for me it was not that small) monthly to a big nonprofit. I was feeling quite good about the goal I was helping to achieve with this.

But one thing I did not like was getting donation requests from this same organisation, every two months or so. Despite my monthly contribution! As a result, it made me feel like my monthly donation was not seen, not appreciated really. As if it did not matter. Almost as if I was not already helping them reach an important goal.

At some point I decided to contact them about this. I asked to be taken off the mailing list for the donation requests, as I was already donating and could not donate more.

“We cannot do that”, they said.

OK, I said.

Then take me off your list altogether. I will stop donating right now.

And I did.

And that was that.



Surprising a donor

For this story we go back many years as well. I decided to support one nonprofit with a small annual donation. I would be reminded of this monthly, when I would receive their newsletters. Occasionally they would have a campaign, announced in the newsletter, but I would not join and donate extra. I was happy to contribute – and happy with my annual donation.

To my big surprise, I received a postcard in the mail a few years back now. To thank me for having been a loyal donor for 25 years.


What about you?

So my question is: which story do you want to be?

Easy, I hope?

We all want to be number 2, right?

So let’s move to the next level question: are your processes, systems and communications as they are now (as you listed them upon my opening question) making it possible for you to be story 2 instead of story 1? Are you sure?

It is really worth it to give some thought to how you handle your donors and your communication with them – and avoid losing loyal donors who feel unappreciated by you.

How I can help

If you’re not sure your systems are set up to manage that money in the best and easiest way, check out my workshop Donation Received – Now What?

In this workshop I walk you through all the things you need to set up, decide and do around the money coming in.

The second part of the workshop focuses on handling the personal data of your donors, coming in with their donations. What do you need to have in place to be compliant with privacy laws that might apply to you (even if you’re not aware of it!)?

All in all, it can be challenging to be on top of all these things – and that’s why I created this workshop for you! You can find out more here:

I can also do a review of your SOPs for managing donations. You can find out more here:

Check out my video How to build strong relations with your donors.

Want to know more and ask questions?

If you want to discuss this more – jump into my nonprofit support community and get input from a wide range of peers and from myself!

Here is how you can join my free nonprofit support community

You can join my free nonprofit support community on the Heartbeat platform here. This group is a safe space for open exchange and discussion on potentially sensitive topics like boards, nonprofit management, fundraising, etc.

You can visit the community via a browser or via an app. Here is the link to download the Heartbeat chat app in the Google Play store.

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The seaside always inspires me and helps me think of articles, videos, workshops and courses I can create for you.

If you want to support me without getting a paid workshop, course or review – you can donate me a coffee and speed up my thinking process!

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