Remind Your Ministry Partners

Welcome to my January Bite-size blog series. I’ll be writing shorter and more frequent posts as I work through some of my January habits. I thought easy ideas would be more helpful to you than longer posts with a lot of detail. When posts arrive in your inbox, find time to make these suggestions your own within a day or so. By the end of the month, you’ll have taken care of a lot of details that will make the rest of the year easier for you.

I hope many of this month’s articles will be helpful to most of my readers. This particular post is for Cru staff.

Remind Your Ministry Partners

Use the Reminder System

We’ve been using Cru’s Reminder System for many years.

The Reminder System prompts your financial partners if it’s time for another gift. If you do use this service, do you need to update anything? I found seven names yesterday that I needed to add to the system.

I’m sure we’ve seen thousands of dollars of pledged donations come in through Cru’s Reminder System because we requested this service.

Go to the report on the StaffWeb to start.

You set the frequency, and then Cru will send one reminder letter and a duplicate receipt when needed. See How the Ministry Partner Reminder System Works (on the StaffWeb).

An Ongoing Task

Check the Reminder System

This bite-size tip is even better if you check the system regularly. The little time spent to keep your reminders current will save you much in the long run.

I check the report on the StaffWeb every two months or so.  I make sure that everyone who should (or shouldn’t) receive a reminder is receiving one. (They can op-out if they prefer.) Remove anyone from the reminder system who is now deceased.

Also, compare what you know about “missing donations” with what the StaffWeb report says:

  • If a reminder letter just went out, wait a bit to see if a donation will come in.
  • If it’s been a while since Cru mailed the reminder letter, then it’s time to contact your ministry partner.

Record “Tasks” and “History”

You don’t have to record these letters, but here’s what I do to know what happened and what I need to do.

When I go to the report to check:

  • I click on the “Last Reminder” column to sort. I scroll down to the bottom of the page.
  • Because I recorded what happened last time I checked, I only have to look at the most recent three or so names.
    • The “Last Gift” column tells you if the reminder letter was successful.
      • I make a history note that it was.
    • If the financial partner hasn’t given
      • I make a history note of the date they received a letter
      • I make a task note to contact them.

(I use generic “task” and “history” because we all have our favorite ways to stay on top of these things. If you only track “tasks” or “to-dos,” knowing a “history” is also helpful.)

Our Experience

In 2021, Cru mailed 32 reminder letters to 22 financial partners. These are the results:

  • The 15 responders:
    • 11 families responded to 14 letters, resulting in $2835 in donations.
    • 4 families’ donations crossed in the mail with the reminder letter.
  • The 7 non-responders:
    • 4 families did not give again after the reminder letter. We need to follow up. One was giving $30/month and another $2 – 3000 per year.
    • Instead of the reminder letter, 3 families responded later to our EOYA (End Of Year Ask) fund appeal. They usually are fund appeal givers.
    • A letter went to a recently deceased ministry partner. Unfortunately, I hadn’t removed her from the reminder system.

It frees up a lot of time and effort to have Cru’s system do some of our work for us. We didn’t have to contact partners who missed several times. One ministry partner gave two donations in response to two of three reminder letters. (It would be harder for them than for us if we had to remind them repeatedly.)

Will you be reminding your ministry partners this year?

NOTE: “Bite-size” clock photo by Lukas Blazek on Unsplash

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