Today we’re talking in more depth about options to engage people in the work we do.

In case you’re like me and prefer to read something instead, here’s the transcript:

In the last video we talked about things we need to know as we’re inviting people to become involved with us. One of the key points was having ways that they can interact with us that are personal, but don’t necessarily take much time. Today we’ll talk about ways to do that.

Some ideas – outside of traditional volunteer roles - that have worked well for other organizations include:
- Thank you calls / prayer ministry
- Providing E-updates
- Monthly webinars / updates
- Be a volunteer advocate (to spread the word)

I’ll cover a little more information about each of these in today’s session.

First, thank you calls. Introducing thank you calls is one of the quickest ways to show you care about your donors. And they really appreciate it too! If you’re unsure about calling people to ask for money, start with thank you calls. You’ll get beyond your fear quickly. Generally what you’re doing during these calls is, of course saying thank you, but also asking for their feedback about what you’re doing. Take notes, because these are the issues they’re passionate about and could help to increase their gifts later.

With a ministry, you can take this further and ask if there is anything you can pray with them about. One ministry I know of found this approach so valuable that they hired a few people to work just in this area. Of course, this is another great opportunity to engage volunteers, but we’ll get back to that in a moment.

Next is providing regular updates to your donors. Email is an inexpensive way to do this, but doesn’t completely replace print communication (have you looked at your email open rates lately)?
You can make these interactive through the use of polls, highlighting donors, and by driving people to your social media presence.

There aren’t many organizations that are using this next strategy, but the ones who are, are building stronger relationships with their donors (and raising more money). Providing a regular, monthly chance to hear about what’s happening can help your donors feel more connected. And whether you have 10 people on the line or 1000, the time to set everything up is the same – assuming of course you have systems in place to handle the details.

Finally, you can invite your donors to become advocates for your organization. These advocates could host ‘home parties’ to introduce others to your organization, or forward information about you to their friends. Or they may share posts on Facebook, call other donors to say thanks or serve on a committee to raise awareness. The possibilities are endless!

There are certainly other options to engaging people, but these are just a few I’ve found helpful. That’s it for today. Stay tuned for more videos!