Whether a parish or a ministry, your impact is only possible through the generosity of others.
It can be easy to take this for granted because of how normal and mundane it might feel in the bigger scheme of things. Every year you ask for money, people give, and the work keeps going.
But this is not just a bunch of numbers. It’s a relationship.
So are you fostering the relationship well? Here are four things to make sure you are regularly communicating to your donors or donation parishioners to help keep the relationship healthy.
“This is how you are making a difference.”
Are you sharing with people where their money is going? Are you sharing the stories of people whose lives have been changed because of their donation?
People need a reason to give and by sharing the impact, we remind them of the reason their donation matters.
Be sure to show their impact, not just tell. Share stories, faces, numbers, and tangible growth in your ministry that was made possible because of donations. Be specific, inspiring, and communicate it without additional asks for more money. It’s important that your communication with donors is balanced and not always asking for them to give.
“We’re all moving towards a vision.”
Most donors are attached to you because of their relationship with you and a shared vision. Usually one comes before the other but both are important to keeping a donor engaged and inspired.
Regularly communicate the big “why” behind all of it. It helps remind people they aren’t just losing x amount of money but are contributing to a bigger purpose.
“We thought you might like this.”
Being in a relationship means give and take. If donors or parishioners give, it means you have to give a little too. So what unique opportunities or gifts can you bring to them?
The power of data on donors and parishioners is that you know them better. You can see into someone’s life stage, situation, family life, job, and interests, which means you can start to find content and opportunities specifically for them. If people give to a pro-life campaign regularly, you can confidently offer them articles, news updates, or an inspiring story about pro-life knowing they will find a lot of value in it.
The kind of value you offer can be articles, ministry opportunities, events, or news up dates. Whatever you have to offer, remember to see your donors and parishioners as complex individuals made up of all kinds of passions, dreams, and needs.
“Thank you for what you do.”
After you get what you want, are you contacting your donors or parishioners? Are you recognizing their contribution and sacrifice?
It’s important to think about giving as not a collection of numbers / donations but several, unique and varying relationships.
If you are regularly receiving, it’s important to regularly recognize that generosity.