“I wanted to take that donation slip, tear it up, and send it back to them!”
These were the aggravated words of a very pleasant woman who lives in my Condo building. She was talking about a very negative experience she had with the direct mail pieces sent to her by a VERY well-known Canadian cancer centre. They sent her a direct mail piece, and she was nice enough to respond with a donation a week later. Within a few weeks, they sent her yet another mailing piece asking for money again. It was as if they didn’t know she had made her donation.
If they were meticulous about updating their donor database with annual fund donations, this shouldn’t have happened. If anything, this should have triggered some kind of tax receipt, acknowledgement, or at least she shouldn’t have heard from them for another few months. Instead, she was made to feel like a bank machine. This kind of vitriol can be avoided. Update your donor data and use it to acknowledge the gifts you get from your donors.
Good data practices enhance your ability to care about your donors. They show that you see them not as bank machines, but as people who are supporting you in your mission.
Please learn from this non-profit’s mistake!