The first impression is often the most important, and that can certainly be the case with an advancement appeal.
Advancement teams often interact with students, but it is once they have graduated that they become a strong donor prospect. As such, the first appeal sent to the new alumni can be vital.
Whether by mail, email, or even on social media, we shared four tips to help you send the perfect communication to your newest alumni:
Graduating from your higher education institution is a big deal – and your alumni deserve to be congratulated for it. Starting your appeal with an acknowledgment of this is not only polite, it will help start your relationship on the right foot.
The more pride an alumnus feels about their accomplishment, the prouder they will feel about the institution it came from. That will help set the stage for a fruitful, ongoing relationship, and help encourage them to eventually give back.
Share some helpful resources
Even after graduation, there are still many ways that a school can help a student. The institution can offer career advice, share job postings, and connect alumni networks.
This helps establish that the student-school relationship lasts long beyond graduation. By offering additional value to the student, it also starts to set the stage for a donation request.
Explain giving options
While some students may have donated to their school during their time enrolled, for many, the first time they consider it will be after graduation.
Explaining the various options that exist – such as one-time gifts, recurring donations, pledges, and more – can help open their mind to the possibility, even if they are not able to contribute today.
Share a simple call-to-action
Before signing off on your communication, you will want to provide one single call-to-action for your alumni to consider now.
Here, you’ll have several options. In some cases, it may fit to ask for a small donation to get them in the spirit of giving back. Other times, you may want to provide a link they can click to get more information, or a way to sign-up for an advancement mailing list.
With the right information, you can try to segment recipients to the call-to-action they are most likely to respond to. For example, the more involved a student was on campus, the more likely they may be to give back early.
Even if most recipients don’t follow through on this action, it will help provide you valuable data for future segmentation. Tracking who has clicked through, seen more information, or just closed the email, can be very helpful for your next communications.
Ace your advancement efforts with Causeview
Causeview Advancement transforms Salesforce’s HEDA (Higher Education Data Architecture) platform into a complete donor management and gift processing system.
You can establish, track and grow each of your advancement relationships, and then process payments anywhere, anytime, and on any device. Through the full HEDA integration, you get the complete picture on students, alumni and families to help you reach every one of your advancement goals.