Gratitude: 4 Steps To The Welcome Process

Las Vegas Sign but with the words, "Welcome to our fabulous non-profit family"

Donor retention is a problem for most nonprofits. No matter how small the gift is, every dollar counts and building meaningful relationships for the future is proven to be more beneficial than obtaining new donors.

How to Nurture a Relationship

It’s all about Gratitude! But you also can get some important feedback during this process as well. Make all the aspects of the welcome in a timely manner. Desire for instant gratification is inherent in all of us. Welcoming a new donor is your opportunity to demonstrate the credibility and credentials your organization has.

Anatomy of Welcoming a New Donor

1) Immediate canned response email with a confirmation receipt.

  • Have the response automatically customize the email content with information about the donor and the donation just made. The issue is that these emails have little to no personal touch and often feel cold.

2) Personalized email follow up shortly thereafter. 

  • Let the donor know the meaning of their donation to you. Acknowledge their contribution and impact on the organization. This email should be sent within 48 hours of the donation being made.

3) Welcome pack in the mail and in the the donor’s hands several of days later

  • Send a formal thank-you letter with a handwritten signature at the least. Do not  have your signature printed onto the page. People can tell the difference and something little like that shows you care and that you really are thankful, even if you did have your assistant come up with the letter. This is about talking to the donor for the first time. What expectations should they have?
  • Go a step further with a handwritten thank-you note as well. This is more informal but at the same time it is a lot more personal. First name basis is a nice touch.
  • Photos can also be nice to include.
  • A printed newsletter is the impact statement of the package. It will let the donor know how involved your organization is with its mission. Newsletters get the donor caught up on the current events.
  • Include your business card. This is a perfect time to network as well as show that you are open for contact so donors are free to ask questions, give feedback, and more.

4) Some organizations go as far as calling every single donor.

  • Find out things such as what made them decide to donate but also to do another personal thank you are very important to know.

Final Thoughts

Just remember not to overload donors here, it is more about a pat on the back. Brevity will benefit you during the welcome. Empower, don’t exhaust! Visuals are a better route to take than walls of text. The donor is joining your family and should be treated as such. There should be at least some personalization to the individual donor, do as much as you can. Who knows, they may even become a vocal advocate for your organization.

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Ultimate Donations streamlines the often convoluted task of planning fundraisers and charity events by guiding you to discover donors more rapidly and effectively. If you have requested donations previously, you might be all to familiar with how tiring and time-consuming examining potential donors can be. Ultimate Donations has done a significant part of the research into who is most likely to donate to your organization. If you want a particular donation, we have the data on what is available.