As a small business owner seeking non-dilutive funding, you know how important it is to secure grants and donations from funders. However, have you ever considered what happens after receiving that initial grant? According to a study by IMPACTS Research, the number one reason that donors didn’t give after the initial grant was that they did not receive a “thank you” for that grant. This means that thanking your funders is crucial for retaining them as long-term partners in your business ventures.
A timely “thank you” shows funders that you value them and their contribution. Funders don’t want to feel like ATMs. They want to feel like valued partners. If you treat them that way, they’ll keep coming back. Below are some key takeaways for maintaining a positive relationship with your funders even after the award has been granted.
1. Make it personal
When thanking your funders, make it personal. Don’t send a generic email or form letter. Take the time to write a personalized note or email that highlights the specific contribution that the funder made to your business. Use their name and be specific about how their contribution impacted your business goals.
2. Be timely
Timing is everything when it comes to thanking your funders. Don’t wait too long to send a thank you note. Ideally, you should send a thank you note within a week of receiving the grant. This shows that you are organized and appreciate the funder’s contribution.
3. Share your progress
Keep your funders in the loop about your progress. Send them regular updates about your business and how their contribution is making a difference. This keeps them engaged and shows them that their investment is contributing to a worthwhile cause. Be sure to highlight specific milestones and accomplishments that your business has achieved with their support.
4. Treat them like stakeholders
It’s important to treat your funders like stakeholders. They are investing in your business because they believe in your vision and want to see you succeed. Keep them involved in your business decisions and seek their input when making important strategic decisions. This shows that you value their opinion and are committed to building a long-term relationship.
Thanking your funders is a critical component of retaining them as long-term partners in your business ventures. Make it personal, be timely, share your progress, and treat them like stakeholders. By following these guidelines, you can build a positive and lasting relationship with your funders that will benefit your business for years to come.
We work with high-growth startups and organizations that support the startup and innovation ecosystem. We build highly specific non-dilutive funding menus, provide proposal preparation services, and measure outcomes of funding through evaluation. Schedule a consult call with us HERE.