Make Your Fundraising Letter Supremely Successful

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Published March 26, 2017

Here Are 10 Tips To Make Your Fundraising Letter Supremely Successful

  1. Focus on the urgent need only your organization can solve.  Donors want to know: Why should I give to your organization, why this program, why now, and why me.
  2. Always include the story of a grateful recipient. Compelling and dramatic. Not more than one story, or else the reader drowns in stories and never gets around to the request for a gift.
  3. The letter should read as if it were from one person to another. Make it read as if you just sat down at your computer and typed a personal letter to a friend.
  4. You can lose your audience in the first line or two. Get to the point as quickly as possible. You have to grab the reader by the lapels in the first few lines and never let go.
  5. Emphasize points by indenting, bold facing, and underscoring. Paragraphs should not exceed five or six lines and be no more than three sentences. Keep sentences to six to eight words.
  6. The letter has to look like a letter— not a flyer. Don’t use color.
  7. The letter is best when you write as you speak. I give you permission to use contractions, one-word sentences, and exclamation marks for emphasis!
  8. Avoid the temptation to seek committee approval of your letter. It will be homogenized and watered down.
  9. People read long letters— provided they’re well written, personal, and beneficial. People won’t read a one-page letter if it’s not well written and compelling. The letter needs to be as long as it needs to be.
  10. Don’t forget to ask for the order. The letter needs to lead the reader from the heart to the checkbook.