Use the Acknowledgements tool to pull a list and create mail merges (or emails) for donations made by check (for example). The Acknowledgements tool allows you to compile activities based on a common thread of your choosing (e.g. Campaign, amount of donation, donations by members of a Group, etc).
There are 4 different actions you can take when Acknowledging donor activity.
- Snailer (printed letter)
Think of your Acknowledgement List as a "net" that is set up to "catch" certain activities as they happen, and prompt you with an action item. Once you set up the Acknowledgement List, it is designed to only look forward. If you'd like to cast the "net" backwards, you'll need to prompt the tool to do so. You'll learn about how to do all of this as you continue to read.
|Note: If you're creating an Acknowlegement that has the action of Call or Visit, you can skip the step of creating a template.|
Creating a Template
To send an Acknowledgment via either email or snailer, you need to have an email/letter template created for the Acknowledgement to generate from.
Go to Communication then Email/Letter Templates and Create a New Template.
Email: If you intend to email using this template, make sure you choose Email/Letter Type: Acknowledgement.
Print: If you want to print this template using the Acknowledgements feature, make sure you choose Email/Letter Type: Acknowledgement.
In the body of your email, insert the Transaction Info For Receipt tag to generate a receipt block, or use the Transaction Amount and Transaction Date tags to place values in-line (e.g. $25 / November 15, 2015).
One Acknowledgement template will be used for many contacts, so these tags will allow for all corresponding gifts to be acknowledged respectively.
Click Create Template to save it.
Go to Communication, then Acknowledgements. Here you'll see previous Acknowledgement Lists you've created (if any), and you can create a New List.
Key things to keep in mind while creating Acknowledgement Lists:
- Use proactively; upon creation, each list will find action items for new activities only, unless refreshed.
- A single activity can only exist in one Acknowledgement List at a time. To prioritize which list catches an activity first, set the list priority.
- List priority is set from top to bottom (the ones on top have the highest priority). Reorder by dragging a list to a new position in the table.
- If you change the priority of the lists, click "Rebuild List" on the list(s) you have reordered to make sure your new priority contains the desired activities to acknowledge.
Creating the List
When you're creating a New Acknowledgement List, you'll see a filter bar very similar to the Activities page.
You can title your Acknowledgement where it says Filter Name, then Select Type such as Email or Call to denote what type of action this Acknowledgement will take. If you choose Email or Snailer, then Select Snailer Template to be used. This will show the template you created in the first step.
Before you save this Acknowledgement, you'll need to set a filter. You can filter for things like what Campaign the gift is attributed to, the amount, etc. If you don't have any criteria like a Campaign or amount, and your list is date related, you can skip adding a filter and click Save.
Generating the Acknowledgement
When you're back on the Acknowledgement List page, your Action Needed will most likely read "0." This is because upon creation, this Acknowledgement List is set up to "catch" future activities as they occur. Once those activities happen, items will populate in your Action Needed column.
To acknowledge activities entered before the creation of this List, click the button along the top of the page. This is how you can "cast your net" backwards, to populate the Action Needed column for activities that happened in the past. This will get prior activities to run through this Acknowledgement filter and generate your action needed.
Select the date you wish to match from and then click the green Refresh button. This can take a few minutes to match all the transactions, depending on how many you have.
Once you have a count showing in the Action Needed column, look to the Actions column and you'll see either Preview & Send To E-mail or Generate Letter (depending on whether it's a snailer or email).
Clicking Generate Letter will take you to the Mail Merge (Mailings) page, where you can print out envelopes and letters of those you wish to send Acknowledgements to. By clicking Preview & Send To E-mail you will see a preview of the email you created, with contextual information based on the tags you inserted. After you Download and generate the letter, you would select the button to Confirm the letter as sent.