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4 Ways Communication Increases Volunteer Retention

Two little girls communicating with telephone cups

Communication allows you to better connect with the world around you.  It allows you to build relationships with the people you value the most. The nonprofit world is built on relationships and communities. Strengthening relationships with communication is key to volunteer and donor retention.

Developing a stronger connection with your supporters will not only grow your organization but create lifelong advocates for your cause. Here are a few ways you can improve your communication with your volunteers and donors to increase your retention.

Add a Personal Touch

There is nothing worse than feeling as though someone is talking AT you instead of TO you. Sending countless emails of data, statistics, and upcoming events is not a way to build a relationship. Try engaging your supporters and making them feel special.

When sending out newsletters or updates make them seem personal. Don’t just share information with your supporters. Engage them! Make them feel as though they are a part of your family.

Using a volunteer management software system can free up more time for your organization to add a personal touch. For example, Special Olympics Missouri uses automation to strengthen relationships with their volunteers.

Communicate Any Change in details

What is one thing that really frustrates you? Is it when plans change but no one reaches out to you for the updated information? This can be very frustrating and cause for your volunteers to not return. Communicating changes in plans is extremely important for volunteer retention. Instantly sending a text will give your volunteers peace of mind.

This not only creates a sense of security for your volunteers but it also helps with internal communication as well. When everyone is on the same page with changes in event details it allows for the event to be executed seamlessly.

Be Easily Accessible

Whether your volunteers have been with your nonprofit for years or they are new to your organization, they are bound to have a lot of questions. You want to make it as easy for them to contact you with any questions or concerns. Communicate your contact information clearly on your website.

If your supporters have to dig to find your information they might just give up and give their time to a different organization.

You can also encourage them to reach out to your organization via social media. Engaging your volunteers on social media will make them feel valuable. This will also help build a stronger connection with your supporters. They will feel as though they know you and can relate to your cause.

Show Appreciation

Communicating your appreciation to your volunteers is a great way to increase retention. If your volunteers feel valued it will encourage them to continue to give their time. You can send emails, post on social media, create banners in your office, or include thank you messages in your newsletters.

Be creative with how you show them appreciation. Even the smallest form of gratitude can go a long way.

Communication is key in any healthy relationship. Treating your volunteers with respect and gratitude will create lifelong supporters and increase volunteer retention. Click here to learn how automating your volunteer management efforts is the first step toward increasing retention.

About Ashley Chorpenning

Ashley Chorpenning is VolunteerHub's Marketing Communications Specialist.

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  1. Billy Peake says:

    Accessibility is the key. Great post!

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