By Harry Gardner, Content and Partnerships Manager at GivePanel
Any fundraiser worth their salt knows they should be thanking people who donate or fundraise for their cause. However, there seems to be confusion around the best way to thank Facebook fundraisers, with many nonprofits not thanking them at all.
The reasons for this vary, but usually, it is a mixture of a lack of time and resources as well as a lack of knowledge on how to find who has created a Facebook Fundraiser for your nonprofit.
With the right ‘thank you’ strategy you can ensure that your supporter feels valued and you can build a long-term relationship with them, through your onboarding ‘welcome’ journey.’
Through our work with a variety of nonprofits, here are tried-and-tested best practices for thanking your Facebook fundraisers.
Four Reasons to Say ‘Thank You’
- Creating a Facebook Fundraiser for your nonprofit, particularly a Birthday Fundraiser, is a big gesture and implies strong support your cause.
- It motivates Facebook fundraisers to raise more. When you say ‘thank you’, be sure to let them know how their money will help. Also, offer tips and advice on how they can reach their fundraising target.
- It reassures the fundraiser that you know they are raising money for your cause and that you will receive the funds.
- It’s a chance to start a relationship. GivePanel’s research indicates that most Facebook fundraisers are new supporters to your nonprofit.
Who You Should Thank
It’s important to distinguish between fundraisers and donors. The fundraiser is the person who sets up the Fundraiser. The donor is the person who donates to the Facebook Fundraiser. Donors are usually friends, family, or colleagues of the fundraiser and are donating to support their friend, not necessarily your nonprofit. That’s why we recommend only thanking the fundraiser, but ALSO empowering them to thank their donors.
The Best Way to Thank Fundraisers
Our research shows that the best way to thank a Facebook fundraiser is to post a message on their Facebook Fundraiser wall. It shows that you’ve acknowledged their effort and that your nonprofit is thankful for their support. It’s worth noting that it is not a best practice to thank your fundraisers on Messenger.
Next, decide on your posting strategy. This will depend on how much time and resources your nonprofit has and how many Fundraisers have been created for your nonprofit. We recommend a strategy of posting a maximum of three messages to their walls. This strategy encourages your fundraisers to raise more money and to opt-in to receive communications from your nonprofit which can potentially convert them into lifetime supporters.
Here’s our three message strategy:
1) The first message should simply say ‘thank you’ and include a link to your website where they can find useful tips on how to maximise their Facebook Fundraising. It’s key to first give something to the fundraiser, such as tips. Here’s an example:
2) The second message, a week or so later, should again be a ‘thank you’ and include a link to a data capture form, which can be built in GivePanel. Here’s an example:
3) The third message is a final ‘thank you’ when the Fundraiser has ended and should include a reminder to fill out the data capture form if they didn’t the first time. Here’s an example:
A Special Note on Capturing Fundraiser Data
If your nonprofit wants to acquire your fundraiser’s data, you’ll need to give them a reason to fill in the GivePanel data capture form. Think of it as a “value exchange.” What value are you offering your fundraiser in exchange for filling out the form to provide their contact information? We have found that one of the most common concerns that fundraisers have is whether your organisation will receive the funds from Facebook. This concern can be used to inspire fundraisers to give you their data: “Please give us some details about yourself so that we can ensure that we receive your funds correctly.”
How Nonprofits are Saying ‘Thank You’
Here are four excellent examples of visually-compelling ‘thank yous’ from nonprofits. Be sure to use photos, graphics, GIFs, emojis, and video to make a strong impression. If you don’t have an in-house designer, get creative by using Canva for Nonprofits – a highly-recommended, free graphic design tool.
Keeping Track of Who You’ve Thanked
Whether your nonprofit has three Facebook fundraisers or 300, it’s important to keep track of who you’ve thanked. You can do this is by using a spreadsheet – although you’d need some Excel wizardry skills! A simple way to keep track is through GivePanel, using the labels feature. The labels help you to log where you’re at with your messaging, ensuring that you don’t miss anyone or any stage of the ‘thank you” process.