I started a new monthly routine that I thought I’d share with you.
We’ve been using Cru’s Reminder System for many years. Maybe twice a year, I’d check the report on the StaffWeb just to make sure that everyone who should (or shouldn’t) receive a reminder was getting one.
Now for the past year on a monthly basis, I started paying attention to, and recording, reminder letters sent by Cru in TntMPD’s History. I don’t record them all, just the ones that I feel are important to record.
So, in one year’s time of recording about twenty of these reminder letters, I’ll explain about 15 of them:
- 5 families did not give again after the reminder letter. We need to follow up with our own phone call or letter.
- 10 families did respond, sending in about $750 / month in response to the letters.
The takeaways for you?
Use the Reminder System
The Reminder System works behind the scenes to gently remind your financial partners if it’s time for another gift. Schedule the letters for one of several choices of frequency: monthly, quarterly, annually, and more. (See NOTES for more information.)
Over several years of sending these letters, I’m sure we’ve seen even thousands of dollars of pledged donations come in through Cru’s Reminder System that we did not need to follow up on ourselves. The little time spent to keep your reminders current will save you much in the long run.
Check the Reminder System
Check monthly or quarterly to make sure your donor friends are in the Reminder System. (They can opt out, if they prefer.)
Also, compare what you know about “missing donations” with what the StaffWeb report says. If a reminder letter just went out, then wait a bit to see if a donation will come in. If it’s been a while since the reminder letter was mailed, then it’s time to contact your ministry partner. (More later in the post.)
How to Record Reminder Letters in TntMPD
You don’t have to record these letters in your TntMPD History like I do, but you may find it useful.
Some things to do before this process, especially if you aren’t in the habit:
- Be sure to do “Gift Input” in TntMPD to have all your donations up-to-date.
- I keep the Direct Deposit field up-to-date in TntMPD by checking the Thirteen Month Report on the StaffWeb about once or twice a year. (See first point under 3.)
- Go through the Reminder System report to make sure all reminder letters are scheduled properly. For instance, if a donor pledges to give monthly, but actually gives bimonthly, use the bimonthly frequency. You’ll know how to choose for each individual.
- Unfortunately, you can’t tell in the Reminder System if your donor is a recurring donor (see point 2).
- A reminder letter is not needed if the ministry partner has set up ongoing gifts.
Now, let’s record useful information from the Reminder System report in TntMPD:
- Go to the StaffWeb / MPD & Donations / My Donations / Ministry Partner Reminders. Open the report.
- Open TntMPD.
- It’s possible to find “missing donations” several ways in TntMPD. I’ll describe one.
- Open the Pledge Fulfillment Report, choosing donations more than 60 days late. (Instructions here.)
- You’ll see a lookup of an alphabetical list of these donors.
- With both the Reminder System report open and the TntMPD file open, I tile these windows so I see them side-by-side.
- Starting with the first person listed in TntMPD, find them in the Reminder System.
- If you never logged history in TntMPD, you’ll find instructions on the TntMPD website.
- In the history tab, click Log History / MPD Letters / Reminder Letter. You’ll see this window:
- Type in “reminder letter sent.” I have this as a Saved Description from the dropdown list, so it autofills.
- Put in the date that the letter was sent.
- Open the details tab. I say “Logged By Cru” because the Reminder System sent a reminder letter, not us.
- Proceed through the names. You may notice a gift already came in after the reminder letter, so skip recording the reminder letter for that ministry partner, if you wish.
In this next example image of a ministry partner’s history, you see that Cru sent a reminder letter. A donation came in, and I sent a thank you note. (Click the image for a larger view.)
Click here for more TntMPD 201 posts.
- Use the links in this post for more detailed instructions for using TntMPD, if needed.
- For more explanation about the Reminder System, see How the Ministry Partner Reminder System Works (on the StaffWeb).