Donor complaints? You’re doing great!

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Chances are as a fundraiser, you’ve had complaints from donors about your work.

‘You send too much mail and it uses the money I sent for children/ cats/ homeless/ the arts’ 

‘Why do you get paid to work for a charity?’

‘Stop making me feel bad, your mailings are full of guilt trips’

‘Why are you using chuggers, everyone hates them’ 

If you have heard any or all of these complaints, do not fear! It means you are doing great work! The number of people who complain usually correlates with the number of people giving. The more complaints you get, the more likely it is you ran a successful fundraising appeal.

I recently ran a small regular giving appeal, where 100 people signed up for regular gifts as an outcome and 1 person complained. That is 1% of all the people that gave. Unfortunately, I had to remind a number of my colleagues of the GREAT outcome we had had as a result of my mailing and that this was JUST ONE PERSON’S OPINION.

What to remember when you get a complaint; 
– Don’t let a complaint change your approach to fundraising. It is just one person’s opinion and remember how well your appeal worked for all of those others that did make a gift.
– Use the complaint to connect better with your donor. Have a real conversation with them and respect their wishes.
– Explain the reason for your fundraising and assure them that you see very good returns every pound spent, which makes your great work possible.
– By receiving complaints, you are doing great work!

For more on this subject, I HIGHLY recommend giving this podcast a listen;How to deal with donor complaints.

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