Write Fundraising Gold with a Storytelling Treasure Map

7 Things That Make Donation Letters Sing

Your 10th grade English class didn’t prepare you to write fundraising appeals.

It’s a specialty skill that often involves doing the exact opposite of what we consider to be “good writing”.

Sure, you can apply best practices from the Associated Press and Chicago Style Manuals to your fundraising letters – and you should have some in-house writing standards.

But if you apply these rules too strictly to fundraising, be prepared to lose revenue.

Fundraising writing is contrarian

Why? Humans say they want grammatically perfect prose. But the truth is that they crave short, chatty copy that makes them feel something special … perhaps even wonderful.

And for most of us, that’s incredibly hard to do well. We bury the lead. We fail to make our characters relatable. We forget that our organizations are not the hero of the story – the donor is.

To help, our team created this Storytelling Treasure Map. It contains the 7 parts of a story that must be present in any donation request letter.

Pin in up on your wall and use it as a reference when you write stories. Soon, your writing will become more clear and engaging to donors.

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Brianna Klink is Chief Operating Officer of Abeja Solutions and co-creator of Beezable, a tool that automates donation letters for nonprofits. Read more from Brianna.