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Fundraising is all about relationships. It's about getting your donors interested and emotionally More money is raised every year through direct individual donations than from all other sources combined.involved in what your organization does. You do that by telling stories primarily about who you have helped, but also about the obstacles overcome (by your clients and by you), about the successes achieved, and sometimes about the failures.

Getting donors interested and involved

You do this with letters and newsletters, on your website or facebook page. It's about getting your donors and prospective donors as excited as you are, and then finding ways to let them express that excitement in a manner that is convenient and affordable for them, and that is rewarding. With each story, remind them that this success is only possible through the continued support of good friends like them, and then provide an easy way to send in a donation, for instance a  pre-addressed envelope (it doesn't have to be stamped), or a link to a way to make a donation online.

Ongoing contact

It's also about maintaining their involvement over time, which requires First and foremost, you send a thank letter for each and every donation.ongoing contact on your part, and this is where you rely on FundRaiser even more. 

First and foremost, you send a thank you letter for each and every donation. There is a fundraising slogan, "Thank before you bank." which means that you should mail the thank you letter before you deposit the check.

"Ongoing contact" means sending a newsletter or personal letter (use FundRaiser to print these) at least twice a year (preferably quarterly) to everyone who has given in the past 2 years. Mail once a year to everyone who has given within the past 4 years. If it's been more than 4 years, mail to them rarely if ever. With FundRaiser, it's easy to keep up with this if you enter each and every donation into FundRaiser on a timely basis (at least once a week).

There are lots of techniques that build on this very basic concept of building and maintaining a relationship with your donors. You can read more about these techniques at other websites dedicated specifically to fundraising. You will also find yourself coming up with creative ideas that are especially good for your organization and group of donors as you gain experience. 


Basics of Donor Management