3 keys to a successful thank-you letter
As the year-end giving season concludes, hundreds of churches are sending out final thank-you letters to people who’ve given during 2012. We’ve talked a lot about the importance of saying thank you and even shared creative ways to thank your givers. But we’ve never highlighted the keys to a successful thank-you letter.
A few weeks ago, event 360 shared the best thank-you letter she ever received.
Here are the three elements she noted that make a great thank-you, along with our thoughts on how your church can use them to make your givers feel valued.
A successful thank-you letter:
1. Explains why their gift is important.
Do your givers know why giving is needed? People love to know how their specific gift is going to make a difference. Can you define the impact a $50 gift makes in your ministry? How about a $500 gift? This is easier for gifts given for a specific need, but explaining why every donation is important gives the givers a sense of partnership.
2. Tells how specific donations accomplish ministry that can be measured.
If your church can connect a person’s financial contribution to the life-change in another person, you’ve taken stewardship and made it personal. Maybe it’s the testimony of someone who started coming to your church this year and became a Christian. Or it’s a mother your church supports who doesn’t have to worry about how she will feed her children. These specifics make giving about people, not money.
3. Educate givers on how their generosity is invested for Kingdom impact.
Gen X and Millennials aren’t as inclined to give through tithes and offerings just because “it’s the right thing to do.” Younger givers want to know how the funds are being applied. If you don’t explain it, they’ll be more likely to give to another nonprofit that provides the details.
Are you including these three elements in your thank-you letters? What are some other steps you’ve taken to communicate ministry impact to givers?