In times of uncertainty or crisis, things can get noisy. Messages start flying in every direction from multiple sources. Especially in rapidly changing situations, the cadence of updates can seem overwhelming. You might wonder how—or whether—you should communicate with your donors and supporters in moments like these.
At Fervor, we think uncertain times can definitely impact your donor and advocate relationships. Depending on how you approach communication in these scenarios, you have the opportunity to potentially make those relationships deeper and even more meaningful. We want to help you do that.
As you think about how to communicate with your donors and supporters in times of crisis, here are some guidelines we think will serve you well:
- Make connection. Don’t go dark because there is already so much noise in the public arena. Now is a great time to strengthen relationships with those who are important to your organization.
- Be brief. Information overload is real. Get to the point quickly and recognize your message is only one of many donors are probably receiving. Be respectful of their time and mental energy. Think about what information they need to know. Cut the rest.
- Be warm. Don’t be coy; let them know how much their support and partnership mean to your organization. Let them know you’re thinking about them in the midst of challenging times.
- Be transparent. Let them know how your organization is affected by current events. Will it change your service to donors? Tell them how. Describe how the crisis or situation is impacting those your organization serves. If you’re facing new and unprecedented challenges, be honest about the needs…and the potential opportunities.
- Stand together. Ask how you can support them, their families or businesses. You might discover new ways to make your connection stronger. Invite them to continue to support you and your work. The goal? A committed partnership doing good together.
Voice-to-voice connection with key donors is always a great way to stay in touch. In uncertain times, there’s an extra measure of comfort in the personal attention of a phone call. Here are a few lines you might find useful in these conversations:
“During this time, most of us are thinking about those we care about…and for us, that means you. How can we help you?”
“We know you care about our work, and we thought you might want to know how this situation is impacting what we do.”
“As always, we think about current events in terms of how they affect those we serve. Here’s how they are impacted….”
“Your continued support means we can continue our work in the midst of this crisis. Thank you so much.”
Even on a good day, it’s good to know you’ve got someone beside you. When things get rough, the value of having a committed partner skyrockets. The great news? Reaching out to your donors and supporters during a crisis gives you both the benefit of connection and support.
And—as always—Fervor is here to help you navigate changes and challenges in good times and bad. Let us know what we can do to help.