In follow up to Part 1 – this post talks about techniques I have used successfully to get the good story message across. For the most part readers scan letters. We need to format the letter to get the good story across the way the reader reads! When asking for money we need to get to the point and get the point across.
- Personalize – use a personal salutation – no more “Dear Friends”
- Segment your list appropriately – talk to your donors where they are – new givers, level of giving, monthly donors
- Mailing envelope – is the first impression – make sure it gets opened. Use color, image, message on it beyond the mailing address
- Pull quotes – to get a point a across and draw your readers attention.
- Signatures – use electronically scanned signatures, real signatures and notes to current donors over a certain threshold of giving
- Post script – ALWAYS have a post script with a call to action, reminder, message about ways to give, make it memorable
- Fact sheet– add a sheet with information about your organization, more story about your programs, include photos – remember a reader is scanning
Ask someone else to read your letter – a friend, spouse, partner – someone OUTSIDE your work. Ask them if they get it – honestly. Is it compelling, clear, concise? You want honest feedback. If you have planned enough time this step will give you time to re-draft and make it the best letter you have ever written!