Once you get someone to assist your cause, you can write a thank you letter to let them know that their contribution is appreciated. The goal of a thank you letter is to make the donor feel like they have a personal connection to the cause, which will make them more likely to contribute towards it in the future.
Be sure to send your thank you letter as soon as possible. This shows your donor that you value their help and reassure them that you are devoted to your cause. The urgency of a prompt thank you letter also makes them feel like they are part of a real movement.
Use the recipient’s name in your salutation. You can also try more informal greetings like “Dear ________,” or “Hello, ________!” This communicates right from the start that the contributor is more than just a source of money.
The first sentence of your letter should also project a friendly and informal attitude, setting a tone of familiarity that will make the reader want to read the rest of your letter.
Say more than just “thank you”. Try adding a personal touch like “You made my day!” or “Thanks to your contribution, cats in the area will have shelters from the cold.”
Keep It Friendly and Personal
Don’t be afraid to get excited about the contribution–it shows that you are passionate about your cause! A sincere thank you letter goes a long way towards making the contributor feel like they made a good decision in helping to make a change.
If possible, include a note from someone who was helped by your cause, or the story of a direct impact that their contribution has made on the community.
You can also tailor your letter to the type of donation your donor has made. If a small business made the donation, refer to their product or service. If someone has made multiple contributions, acknowledge that.
Every bit helps–make sure even smaller donors get a heartfelt thank you letter. Remind them that small donations are often the backbone of fundraising efforts. They’ll feel good about their donation and will be more likely to donate more in the future.
Wrap It Up Nicely
Thank the contributor again and sign the letter by hand to add a personal touch to it.
Adding a postscript note after your signature is a good idea as it stands out from the rest of the letter so make it interesting! Avoid directly asking for another contribution, but try referring to upcoming events or opportunities to help with your cause in the future. If you have one, you may also encourage them to follow you on your group’s social media account(s).
Include a contact name and number for yourself or for an organization related to your cause.
Other Things to Keep in Mind
As always, proofread your letter–make sure the donor’s name is spelled right!
Handwritten letters feel especially authentic, but make sure they are legible. If you don’t know the donor well enough or would like a more professional feel, typed letters might be a good idea. Feel free to play/experiment with pictures and other graphics to catch the reader’s eye.