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3 ways to make your recurring donors feel special

Posted February 14, 2019 by Virginia Davidson

make recurring donors feel special

When a donor chooses to provide regular, ongoing support to your organization with a recurring gift, they’re committing to your mission and stating, “Your work matters to me.” You can make your recurring donors feel special and honor their investment in your organization by giving them inside glimpses into the important work they’re helping make possible at your nonprofit organization.

How to make your recurring donors feel special

Idea #1: Put together a day-in-the-life piece

This could be written from the point of view of a staff member, or you could take the perspective of one of your stakeholders—an animal in your shelter, a painting in your museum collection, a piece of land that’s conserved by your organization. Send it to your recurring donors as a stand-alone piece, or include it as a special add-on with your regular newsletter.

Check out some great examples of meaningful nonprofit stories and what to include in yours in Rob Wu’s article, 5 Elements Of A Compelling Nonprofit Story.

Idea #2: Invite your recurring donors to an exclusive event

These people are part of a special community; invite them to an exclusive event and make them feel appreciated. You can also consider an add-on element to an existing event, such as a reception ahead of a lecture or a behind-the-scenes tour.

Idea #3: Share news with your recurring donors first 

Who’s the first to know about good news at your organization? Most likely, it’s your staff and board members, and then you may promote the news through social media, an upcoming eblast, or a quarterly newsletter.

Why not include recurring donors among those in the first-to-know group? We all like to hear good news and feel that we’re part of something successful. When you find out your organization is awarded a grant or when you reach a milestone for your mission, tell your recurring donors. Make quick phone calls or send brief emails telling them your good news and express that you wanted them to be among the very first to know.


However you choose to invite your recurring donors into the inner workings of your organization, make it clear when they’re receiving information specifically because they’re a recurring donor versus being among those receiving communications that are sent to your broader network. They’ll be reminded that their investment in your organization is important, and that your organization recognizes and values its recurring donors.

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