Fundraiser Letters:
Compelling Writing Tips, Part Two

This is part two of the three part writing tips for fundraiser letters.

Below you will find an index to use to quick jump to each tip in all the sections for writing effective letters.

And remember, writing an excellent letter is often a really important part of a successful fundraising campaign!

So take your letter writing serious and use these tips and advice to write really compelling fundraising letters.

You'll also find that these tips will help you with your Online Donations elevator pitch!

You can quick jump through the following links to all the headings and tips...

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Want Sample Donation Letters to help you write your appeals?! ... Then click here to get the sample letter swipe file!

It has every sample letter on Rewarding Fundraising Ideas.

Set The Scene:

All great fundraiser letters are exciting because they take their readers to the action of the cause.

They place you in the world that they are trying to make a better place, in the lives of people who they are trying to help!

They set the scene!

By setting a scene you are taking your readers to a place that they will probably never go, you make the read exciting for them and most importantly you pull directly on their emotions.

You make them feel emotionally involved - and someone who is emotional involved will be more likely to take some form of action about it!

Here are some top quality tips for Writing Compelling and Effective Fundraising and Donation Letters! (Photo by Brian Finifter / Flickr)

Here is a good example of setting a scene...

"We were frozen with shock, amazement, and fear all at the same time...

It had been a long and hard journey through Sudan, and at the end of it we were met by the frail, gaunt and starving bodies of children, teenagers, and adults all rushing towards us. Protruding rib cages and depressed stomachs. Legs as frail and thin as match sticks. It was the most shocking sight we had ever seen.

But with this sight came their smiles, their laughter, their cries of joy, and their warm embraces. Tears were shed on all our shoulders as we were hugged and thanked by many different people.

And suddenly, we all realized how much what we were doing, meant to all these people!"

Click Here to get more sample letters like the above extract!

Structure Your Fundraiser Letters:

The rule of thumb here, is to appeal to your readers hearts first (setting the scene and drawing them in emotionally), and then appeal to their heads (by giving facts and figures).

So here is the simple structure that I think you should follow...

  • As I said above you should open your fundraiser letters by describing a dramatic scene.
  • Then go on to state your need and ask your reader to participate by donating money or a gift etc.
  • You should then continue with describing your organization/cause and all the benefits it provides and the needs it tackles!
  • You will then finish off by including another couple of scenes that will keep your readers emotionally attached, and conclude by once again asking them to participate through a donation etc. (Your call to action).

And don't forget to also thank them and include a PS.

Make It Long (Within Reason):

Most advice that you'll read and receive will be to make your fundraising letters long. There are a couple of reasons for this...

  • You can completely cover all the information and details about your cause, what needs it covers, and what its needs are! Readers won't feel uninformed or in the dark about your cause.
  • Whether your fundraiser letter is long or short most readers won't read every word anyway, but a longer letter will mean that the passionate readers who do read every word will still feel fulfilled.

But here is my advice...

Make sure that your letter includes all the necessary information, details, figures and stories to be conclusive enough to impress every reader.

Make sure your readers will feel completely informed once they've finished reading.

And then go no longer than that!

By waffling on unnecessarily you will only be wasting your own time and you may be putting yourself in danger of losing your passionate readers who do read every word!

Waffling unnecessarily will not impress them!

Want Sample Donation Letters to help you write your appeals?! ... Then click here to get the sample letter swipe file!

It has every sample letter on Rewarding Fundraising Ideas.

Recommended Resources:

Writing Effective Grant Proposals by Pamela Grow - This is one of my most recommended fundraising books. If you are using a strong fundraiser letter or foundation grant campaign then this book is a must read.

Other books you should read are...

This Is Part 2 of Writing Tips for Fundraiser Letters:

Click below to go to Part 1 or Part 3...

Fundraiser Letter Writing Tips Part 1

Fundraising Letter Writing Tips Part 3

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.

Like This Page?

Where are you?

› Tips & Techniques Part 2