There’s a lot of hype surrounding major gift donors. They are the ones who financially support your mission and whose contributions make a huge impact and we put a lot of emphasis on acquiring them and nurturing those relationships.
Because of the weight we put on major gift donors, we sometimes forget about the small donors – those who give $5 or $20 in response to your appeals, fundraisers or campaigns. The gifts may be small, but these donors have a big effect on your organization and your cause. So, before you discount the small donors, here are six reasons why you should show them how much you appreciate them and why their small donation matters.
- Small gifts are given out of passion. Those who give small gifts may not be able to afford the big, impressive gifts that your major donors give. However, the fact that they chose to give some of their hard-earned dollars to your organization demonstrate the passion they have for your cause, and that’s a big deal!
- They’ll become repeat donors and follow your cause. Major gift donors may give once a year or once every few years, but small gift donors will often give repeatedly and regularly – albeit in smaller amounts – as they receive appeals from your team.
- They are appreciative of your appreciation. Small gift donors know their gifts are small, but the gesture is just as meaningful as a major gift donor’s $10,000 donation. This means that they will be extremely grateful for your recognition of their small gift.
- Their initial gift could be them trying out your organization. If they have never given to your nonprofit before, they may be hesitant to bite the bullet on a large donation and will want to know if you are reputable, if you’ll thank them, if you’ll follow up and if you’ll keep them in the loop as to the status of the project that their donation went to. This could be the start of a very good donor relationship (and possibly a major gift donor relationship), so make sure to make their first giving experience a great one.
- They could eventually become major donors. But even if they don’t, they will likely be loyal donors. If donors give small amounts to your organization regularly, they could eventually become major gift donors as you build and nurture that relationship. However, even if they aren’t the next top-tier donor, there is a very good chance that they will continue to be loyal donors and be the ones responding to your appeals and campaigns regularly.
- They may supplement their smaller donation with time. This means that, even though their gifts aren’t particularly large, they may still feel a connection with your cause and could be regular volunteers if they have some time, but maybe not funds, to spare.
They may not have sufficient financial means, but what small gift donors can give they’re choosing to give to your cause! The small gifts are sometimes the biggest gestures, and the donors who are consistently giving small gifts are ones who are passionate about your mission.