avoid mistakesThree Things to Avoid When Writing a Fundraising Letter

Writing a fundraising letter to potential donors may be the single most important thing that you do when launching a fundraising campaign. Fundraising letters are still a tried and true method of raising donations for a cause, but it’s good to do some research and find some guidelines to work with before putting a pen to paper. It’s also important to know what NOT to do when writing a fundraising letter. Here are three things to avoid when writing a fundraising letter:

  1. Don’t be long-winded. Yes, you want to tell a compelling story about your organization and why your reader should want to donate, but you don’t want to put your audience to sleep. Don’t launch into a long (or lecture-like) diatribe about your charity. Make the letter, clear, concise, and correct by using easy to comprehend language, and short but powerful sentences and anecdotes. If your fundraising letter is too long, you might lose your audience after the first paragraph.
  2. Don’t ask for “support” if that’s not what you need. It’s important to be very clear about what you are asking for in your donation letter. Readers need a very specific call to action, so don’t tap dance around your request. If you need your reader to donate fifty dollars, then be sure to ask for fifty dollars in your letter.
  3. Don’t make it messy. In a fundraising letter, then content is very important, but visual appeal is equally important. Be sure to create a clean, tidy, well-formatted fundraising letter. If it looks unprofessional or like you didn’t spend time on it, then readers won’t want to donate their hard-earned money to your organization. Leave plenty of white space so it’s easy on the eyes. Including colorful images or photos and other supporting documents to your fundraising letter packet may be effective too.