How The Raptor Center Used Personalized Videos for Their Biggest Fundraising Event of the Year

Learn how the Raptor Center blew their donors away by sending videos

Brittany Nardi
January 19, 2022 · 4 min read
How The Raptor Center Used Personalized Videos for Their Biggest Fundraising Event of the Year

The Raptor Center at the University of Minnesota was looking for a way to effectively thank their donors for donating to their largest fundraising event of the year - Minnesota’s Give to the Max Day. They didn’t want to send a generic note in the mail or another automated email; they were looking for something genuine, authentic, and easy to execute.

Enter Gratavid.

Gratavid is a tool that allows organizations to create personalized videos at scale and send them via email or text. Nonprofit organizations use Gratavid to personally thank their donors, collect testimonials, and bring their donors to the scene by showing them the impact of their donation.

The Raptor Center partnered with Gratavid to create personalized videos thanking donors at all giving levels. The campaign exceeded their expectations and made it possible to thank 450+ donors!

Campaign Objective

The Raptor Center's goal was to have a personal touchpoint with every single person who donated to their most successful campaign ever. The support they receive from the community means everything to them, so they were looking for a way to engage with those who have helped move their mission forward. Whether they were first-time donors, donors that gave a smaller dollar amount, or returning donors and those supporting at a high level, they wanted to ensure they were thanking each and every one of them personally.

“We as a center set the expectation that this would be a priority and a team effort to thank everyone because as a nonprofit, all of our work is possible thanks to our incredible supporters.” - Steve Turnbull

Solution

The Raptor Center turned to Gratavid for help.

With the use of Gratavid, they could work as a team to reach their goal. The video tasks were assigned to a group account that their team pulled up on a shared computer, setting up a thank you “studio” of sorts. Whoever was free at the time could see the current progress and jump in to thank donors personally before handing it off to the next person. It meant no donors were missed, and they had an easy way to organize, track, and send 1 personalized video and two generic thank you videos to all their giving day donors! 

Steve Turnbull profile pic

“Gratavid made it possible to easily and conveniently thank all of our donors and reach our goal of showing our appreciation at all giving levels. Without Gratavid, we wouldn’t have had a process to capture all these videos and track where to send them without getting overwhelmed."

Minnesota Raptor Center logo
Steve Turnbull
Minnesota Raptor Center

Results

raptor stats

The campaign was sent to all giving day donors and finished with a unique open rate of 67% and a unique click-through rate of 47.8%.

“Perhaps my favorite part of the entire experience was getting the responses back from supporters. The emails of thanks and appreciation were such a joy to read. I compiled a collage to share with the rest of our team, showing them how grateful our donors were to receive the videos.” - Steve Turnbull

The Raptor Center also received a reply rate of 15.1%  from their donors. Here are just a few of the replies they received.

“Wow! That was the best thank you we have ever received for a donation! What amazing birds and amazing people taking care of them! Our daughter Lyn loves volunteering at the Raptor Center and we are happy to support your mission!"

"Thank you! Wow! The best response to a donation EVER!"

“What a creative greeting! I hope it was as much fun for you to make as it was for me to receive.”

How awesome are those? Check out our 8 Tips for More Video Plays and Replies to learn the ways in which you too can receive amazing replies!

Steve’s Tips

1. Divvy up the tasks between team members. There is no way that we could have pulled off thanking 450+ donors if we didn’t divvy up the tasks between our team members. Setting our expectations of how we would execute this campaign, in the beginning, was key.

2. Use a whiteboard to write the persons’ name. We used this tip from Gratavid to let our donors know that the video was specifically created just for them.

3. Add props to catch the attention of the donor. We added in one of our live raptors (a falcon, owl, or hawk) that was perched in the frame to really grab our donor’s attention and make it unique to The Raptor Center.

Are you looking to receive replies like this on your next thank you campaign?

If you leave this article feeling motivated to create a donation experience that will make your donors feel confident in the impact of their gifts and eager to contribute again, set up a 30-minute demo today.

WRITTEN BY
Brittany Nardi
Customer Success Coordinator @ Gratavid
Brittany serves as the Customer Success Coordinator at Gratavid. Growing up in a small town surrounded by Mom and Pops, she understands the importance of supporting small businesses. As an extrovert, she thrives on communicating and cultivating relationships with others. She previously served as a Marketing Assistant for Invent@NMU, where she helped companies and nonprofits launch and succeed. Brittany is our platform guru.
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Ready to stand out with personalized video?

Check out our favorite Gratavid testimonials below, and visit Gratavid.com for examples and to learn more.

Eshon Allen

Gratavid truly helped us reimagine the connections we make between our school community and the donors who make it all possible.

UCLA
Eshon Allen
UCLA
Jenny Johnson

Gratavid has helped take our stewardship to a new level. I can not express enough how much I love this platform.

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Jenny Johnson
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Kerri Naber

Our donors are so thankful to receive Gratavids because it communicates that they are a big part of our mission. A personalized video makes them feel valued and seen.

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Zack Huffman

Gratavid is a game changer. Since starting I’ve used it every day.

Teach For America
Zack Huffman
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