“A donor has invited me to contact her, but I don’t know her preferred means of communication! Help!”
There are only four, thank goodness! Email, text, phone, or handwritten note. Very rarely these days will you send a letter, especially if you are looking for a timely reply.
If your connect with the donor was in person, hopefully you asked, “I’d be glad to! Shall I give you a call?” and they may have said, “Email me!” In other words, try to get a clue when you are with them.
Otherwise, here’s what I do. I don’t like to catch my donors by surprise. Especially senior donors. An older lady in Florida, I’ll send her a note, reminding her of how we met, her request that I contact her, and a specific date and time I will call to follow up.
Someone who is president of a company, I might call the assistant and ask that person’s advice. Someone in early retirement, email for sure. Texting is only when I know the person really well.
I find email to be the safest form of approach, generally. Like everything else in our business, think of the donor and how that person might want to be contacted.
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