When someone makes a donation on your website, what do they get in return? Are you giving donors an earful about how great you are, or do you tell them about how great they are? Here are three dos and don'ts on how to stay focused on your donor's generosity so that they feel great and want to keep giving:

NFG Fundraising Superhero

Don't: Make your donors feel like an ATM.

Do: Instead of asking your donors for money, give them an important job that only they can do. Make them feel needed and exceptional.


Don't: Tell your donors how great you are and how many great things you've done.

Do: Make your donor your first priority. Tell them how many great things they have made possible with their contributions.


Don't: Put donors names on a long list to say thank you—especially one that divides them into different giving levels and can make some contributions seem more important than others. There isn't much involvement in seeing your name on a list—but there is a lot of (negative!) emotion if your name is spelled wrong!

Do: Sending your donors personal thank you notes will not only show your genuine appreciation, but make you appear thoughtful and authentic.


Remember, it's not about your donor's money, it's about what your donors make possible!

To learn more about retaining your fabulous donors, access the archived presentation of Nonprofit 911: Turn First-Time Donors Into Repeat Donors with Tom Ahern and Jay Love.