This is a critically important time to communicate with your supporters. But enough text-only emails. More videos like Bridget’s. More handwritten notes. More phone calls. 

I gave charitable gifts to ten organizations last year. In the month since Covid_19 has upended our lives, I’ve received updates from most of them by text-only email.

Bridget is executive director of an organization serving homeless youth. She founded the agency 15 years ago and is well-known to its volunteers, donors and partners. Bridget recently posted a video to supporters on YouTube. As a donor, I found her message powerful. Here are six reasons why:

It’s simple.  Her organization spent none of its limited money and time on a highly-produced video. She made notes, put her kids in the next room, turned on her camera, and spoke.

It’s authentic.  If you know Bridget, this is her – kind, thoughtful, committed and self-effacing. There’s no false bravado here, just a face and voice in an inbox flooded with text.

It’s personal.  She starts by telling us about her family, and empathizing with all of us lucky enough to be working from home with loved ones.

It’s informative.  Bridget gives us a practical update about her staff’s current work serving homeless youth, and their plans to continue helping youth even if things get worse.

It’s short.  Her message is just three minutes – long enough to be informative, and brief enough to keep me watching. 

It’s inspiring.  She asks for money, but only after I’ve seen her genuine caring, heard about the courage and commitment of her staff, and been reminded of the resilience of youth.  

This is a critically important time to communicate with your supporters. But enough text-only emails. More videos like Bridget’s. More handwritten notes. And more phone calls. 

What are your thoughts about communicating with your supporters during this time? 

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