In yesterday's post, I offered up a little matching quiz. Let's see how you did.
A through D is the list of charitable gifts, and  throught  is the list of responses
A. I make a generous gift to my business school every year, as part of a five year commitment that I keep renewing. This is the largest individual item on this list.
B. A number of annual donations to worthy causes
C. One of these annual gifts is to the Salvation Army, who gets about the same amount as the others in B above
D. I recently made a campaign contribution to a candidate for leadership of a political party
Here is the list of thank yous:
 and  Handwritten and personalized thank you card comes from two of these
 A tax receipt, followed up by mailing labels and a request for more funds
 A form letter
Answers: A-4, B-3, C-1, D-2
I was surprised and pleased to get the personalized card from the candidate. And impressed. This is very memorable. It looks genuine. It has had the effect of making me feel more strongly supportive of the candidate than I already was. I have started deleting and ignoring messages coming from the others.
The annual note from the Salvation Army is also impressive, and it makes them completely stand out from the pack of annual gifts. They are the only ones who don't seem to overly pelt us with additional requests all year. It feels like a tremendous amount of work on their part, but also has really cemented for us that the funds are appreciated.
The university sends me a form letter filled with platitudes. In fairness, they also have a person call me, but that person is trying to cultivate more; it's not really a thank you. The form letter is actually somewhat damaging in my view, because it serves to remind me what a small donor I really am, that I do not warrant a genuine signature from anyone.
The constant requests from other charities is annoying. I don't want the labels. But I guess they must work. It's a bit depersonalizing.
How about you? What are your insights on this topic?