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Donor Tracking

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Donor tracking is the process of collecting and managing information about your audience (subscribers, volunteers, donors, and potential donors) who could contribute to your nonprofit organization. It involves tracking and organizing data such as donor names, contact information, giving history, communication preferences, and relevant notes.

Nonprofits should engage in donor tracking to better understand and engage with their supporters and there are many Customer Relationship Management software (CRM) options to do so. By tracking donor information, nonprofits can personalize communication and fundraising efforts, identify potential major donors, and analyze giving trends to inform future strategies. Donor tracking can also help nonprofits to develop long-term relationships with donors and increase donor retention.

To effectively track donors, nonprofits should utilize a donor management system (DMS) that allows for centralized data storage and analysis. A DMS can also automate certain tasks, such as sending thank-you notes or processing donations, which can save time and reduce errors. There are several DMS options available, ranging from basic spreadsheets to more sophisticated software with advanced analytics capabilities.

When tracking donors on a spreadsheet for your nonprofit, good data is key to building a good donor relationship. There are several pieces of information that you should include:

Donor Contact Information: This includes the donor's name, mailing address, email address, and phone number.

Donation History: Record the date of the donation, the amount donated, the method of payment (such as credit card, check, or cash), and any notes about the donation, such as whether it was designated for a specific program or project.

Donor Communication: Keep track of any communication with the donor, including phone calls, emails, letters, or in-person meetings. Note the date and content of the communication, as well as any follow-up actions needed.

Donor Preferences: Record any preferences or restrictions that the donor has communicated to your organization, such as preferred method of communication, frequency of communication, or restrictions on how their donation should be used.

Donor Relationship: Keep track of the donor's relationship with your organization, including whether they are a first-time donor or a repeat donor, and any past involvement or volunteer work with your nonprofit.

Donor Segmentation: Organize your donor list into different segments based on common characteristics, such as giving level, geographic location, or areas of interest.

Donor Analytics: Track key performance indicators (KPIs) to analyze donor behavior and identify trends. Examples of KPIs include donor retention rate, average donation amount, and lifetime value of a donor.

Remember to keep your donor spreadsheet or ideally CRM up-to-date and accurate. Regularly update the spreadsheet with new donations, communications, and changes to donor preferences or contact information. This will ensure that you have an accurate and comprehensive view of your donor base, and can make informed decisions about how to engage and retain your supporters. There is no easier way to lose a donor than through inaccurate donor data entry.

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