Great way to say Thanks

I really like this Thank you note from Temple Street Children’s Hospital.

It came some time (probably 6 months) after the appeal, so it may not be the most timely, but it was really nice. As soon as it came in the door it was something I wanted to look at. It wasnt personalised, which would have been nice, but the fact that it was a postcard, for some reason, made it ok not to have it personalised.

You can’t really read the copy here on this image, it  isnt great, certainly doesnt stir the emotions, but it does get the message across.

The end result was I felt good about Temple Street and when they send me out their raffle tickets later in the year I will be more than happy to sell them on their behalf.


7 thoughts on “Great way to say Thanks

  1. Conor I have to disagree with you on this. I think it’s a very lazy piece of donor stewardship. Correct me if I’m wrong but I think you may like the image on the card and the charty rather than any message that it hopes to convey. I was able to magnify the copy and you are quite right about that – it’s not very good. Call me old fashioned but the charity missed a great opportunity to actually take some time to write a proper thank you letter and convey their true appreciation. They could have explained in detail where the money raised will be actually used, who won the raffle (makes it real), how much it raised and the part they played to make it all happen etc.

    Using a postcard as a thank you is just a cheap alternative without much thought. It was probably done to save money rather than any great thought put into it – the copy betrays it. In fact to be even more cynical – it would have been much better to use an image actually drawn by a child at Temple Street, but it looks like a designer did it. Apologies if an actual patient drew it, but if so they should have credited it (e.g. Paul aged 6) to them – this would have added even more heart felt thanks.

    Again as you say it wasn’t personalised, it also looks like a label was used for your address (surely they could have ink-jetted the salutation and address) and arrived six months after the event!! Charities should really be thanking people as soon as possible and not as an after thought. I think you actually hit the nail on the head when you say “it wasn’t personalised…but the fact that it was a postcard…made it ok not to be personalised.” We get DM postcards in the mail all the time advertising something or other and I would suggest that 9 times out of 10 they go in the bin. They are flimsy and by their very nature impersonal – we send postcards because we haven’t time to write! Is this what we are saying to our donors?

    At the end of the day Conor you liked it, for all its faults – so it achieved its objective on you, but perhaps there are all motivators working, e.g. affiliation with the charity and its aims – the cause is highly emotive! But as you said in earlier blogs “live in the world of a non fundraiser” and the postcard may have turned some non-fundraisers off. Infact I don’t even think your “Director of Appreciation” would have sanctioned this card.

  2. Using a postcard as a thank you is just a cheap alternative without much thought.

    Leaving aside the specifics of this piece (and a unpersonalised thank you arriving 6 months after the event is simply inexcusable) I would take issue with your general point. Postcards can be a very positive piece of donor stewardship. Personalised and promptly sent, with a relevant message and the right brand values a thank you postcard (or just a thank you card) can stand out from the typically inert and dull thank you letters that many charities send. Several of our clients use them and have received very positive feedback from donors.

  3. Paul, I think you bring up some good points, yes I do like the cause and that is probably why I cut them a bit of slack. I do think there was a missed opportunity with the copy, its really bad and some of your suggestions there are good, and the timing, well no one can argue in favour of that. I do like it though. Maybe more so as a first step in a communications strategy with these donors, but it did stand out nicely. I do think it should have been personalised. It isnt something I have seen used often and maybe that is also why I praised it, it sounds like you have seen it a lot and so it doesnt stand out. Great comments, thanks

  4. Thanks Conor, Damian makes a valid point too about the monotonous thank you letters some charities send out and yes I can see where a post card may stand out from the crowd, but as you say, I feel too only as a first step communication piece in a proper donor stewardship programme.

  5. We just need to do a better job saying thanks don’t we. I’ve seen some shocking thank you communications and worse have heard of cases where there was no thank you

  6. Conor, can’t help agreeing with some of the comments here (as do you).

    Remember when we raised money and brought two families away about 10 years ago, and while on holiday we sat them down to write thank you postcards to the people the funded the trip? Probably took no more than 20 minutes. The kids got a chance to say thanks, and the guys who forked out the cash felt appreciated. Big charities need to get as close to that as possible.


  7. Pingback: A Great way to say thanks - Part 2 « Conor’s Fundraising Blog

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