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Set an Email Out of Office that Inspires Your Donors

About to set your out of office for the holidays?  This is a golden opportunity to put a warm glow on your organization right at end of year when people are thinking about giving back.

A couple of weeks ago I got the gold standard of all automatic out of office responders from my friends at Greenlights who were away from the office after their big gala.  We all know how exhausting and demanding events are.  After months of planning, recruiting sponsors and table captains, selling tickets, organizing seating charts, making name-tags, finding auction items, and writing speeches most folks are ready for a vacation, if not retirement.  But while you may be ready for some well deserved time off your constituents are at the peak of their adoration of you and positively buzzing with goodwill about your organization!  Ironically this is when they are the most likely to reach out to you - when you are taking some well deserved time away from the office.  It may be a couple of days or a week.   Usually when I reach out to a staff member after an event or around a holiday I get no response or a very brief one sentence autoresponder.  That’s exactly why Matt’s message stood out like a rose in a bed of thistles.

Here’s what I love about his message:

1)      I was thanked immediately for supporting the event – in the subject line and the first sentence.

2)      I got important “insider” info about the events success – I was told in second sentence how much they raised that night.

3)      He shared important program information – revealing the award winners were.

4)      He ended with a call to action to donate.

Whether you craft a thoughtful holiday out of the office or a post gala out of the office message, put some thought and preparation into it.  Leverage this communication to thank your constituents for their support and share a brief quote or story of thanks from a client you serve.  Include a link to give in your closing or as a p.s.

Special thanks to Matt Kouri and the great team at Greenlights for letting me use their email in this post!

Happy Holidays!