You don’t want a “nice” donor wall. You want a donor wall that makes people walk into your building and do a double-take; a donor wall that immediately makes someone think “I want MY name there.”
If you already have a donor wall, but haven’t seen any improvement in donor engagement, you might want to consider giving your wall a face lift to incentivize new and prospective donors alike to take interest in your company.
Here’s why you should revamp your donor wall:
- You can show it to the world (including potential donors.)
When you recreate your donor wall and turn it into a new work of art, there is no better reason to throw an event! Send out invitations to all of your past and prospective donors, and let them come in to see your new and improved installation and remind them of your cause. Ask them to invite their friends and family – it’s easy to get donations rolling when people can see how they will be celebrated in return, and when they can be reminded in person what you stand for, and what change you want to enact in the world.
- This is the time to restructure how donors are rewarded for their gifts.
A lot of donors get promotional mugs, bumper stickers, and shirts for certain donation levels. While we all love drinking coffee out of our NPR mugs, you can make your recognition system far more exciting. Do donors that have been around for over five, ten years get to see their names featured higher on the wall? Do they have their picture put up? Do they get a special dedication for something amazing they did? Are their name plates a special material to commemorate their long-term standing?
- It shows who you are as a brand.
Donor walls don’t have to be walls with lists of names – use this face lift to get creative! What represents your business better than a square of acrylic near your front door? Motifs like trees, gears, hand prints, and landscapes are popular ways to not only beautify the wall, but to add more significance to each donor’s place on it.
Let the world know how you view your donors – are they petals on a bouquet? Musical notes on a staff? This is the time to show them that they aren’t simply giving you money – they are enriching your company.
- It can make the recognition system easier to update and manage.
Many people start out with great donor walls, only to realize after a few months or years that the system in place isn’t tenable. Maybe it gets quickly cluttered, or does not offer an easy to add sections or new names.
Updating your wall gives you a chance to model your donor wall around the needs you now understand about your recognition system – how often will it need to be updated? Is the display in the best location? Is there good distinction between donor levels?