This is the Blackbaud Community Best Practices blog.

Crafting On The Job

Community Member, KaLeigh Hurley, shows you how a small gesture can go a long way with your donors. Give this blog a "LIKE" to vote for it to win the bbcon blog contest!
Our office decided to buy a Cricut. This is a crafter’s Swiss army knife. It can design ANYTHING. After playing with it, my director said, “Make this do great things.”

My first thought: CRAFT AT WORK! 
My second: How am I going to use this? 

I wanted our thank you letters to be more personal than a scribbled “Thanks!” Don’t get me wrong, handwritten notes are great to show donors gratitude, but there’s something special about a handmade anything. It says, “You deserve something one-of-a-kind.” 

We use our RX Assist fund in our annual acquisition. It’s simple, $100 = 1 patient’s medicine. Donations are low, so it was the place to start. We want to show donors the people they help, but HIPAA makes this difficult. Our method? Make the people literally fall in their lap. Each letter now has cutouts (thanks to our Cricut!) inside. When it’s opened, the “patients” fall out, like this: 

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My advice? Try crafting for new or major donors. The time and effort is worth it (and it’s fun!). Donations have increased, and donors love the personal touch.
This was the best project. Imaginations went wild! We had a positive atmosphere, a fun experience, and creativity flowing in a data-heavy office.
Posted by Crystal Bruce on Sep 3, 2018 8:25 PM America/New_York

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Good luck, KaLeigh Hurley‍ !
  • Posted Tue 04 Sep 2018 09:32 AM EDT
how original!  What a unique way to catch your donor's attention!
  • Posted Tue 04 Sep 2018 02:50 PM EDT
Hmm, how to translate this for our donors. Thanks for sharing how you made your letters fun and personal.
  • Posted Tue 04 Sep 2018 03:32 PM EDT
Thanks, Crystal! I'm excited for this contest - it would be my first bbcon!
  • Posted Wed 05 Sep 2018 07:58 AM EDT
What a unique idea Kaleigh! I can hear a donor saying to you, "oh, you're the one that sent me the paper patient."
  • Posted Wed 05 Sep 2018 02:50 PM EDT
Amy Wieck‍ This sounds right up your alley! Not that we ever have time... ;_;
  • Posted Fri 07 Sep 2018 01:43 PM EDT
Love it! Thank you for bringing this to my attention @ Alex Jays. Little manatee cut outs...  
  • Posted Fri 07 Sep 2018 03:17 PM EDT
Look at you interacting with your donors!  You'll have to let us know how this impacts your appeal.  Very innovative idea.
  • Posted Wed 26 Sep 2018 09:57 AM EDT
This is really original and crafty!  Awesome stuff.
  • Posted Fri 19 Oct 2018 09:59 AM EDT
What a fun idea!
  • Posted Tue 04 Dec 2018 11:12 AM EST