How to Write a Direct Mail Fundraising Letter
Writing and distributing a fundraising letter is one of the most traditional and often most effective ways to raise money for your charity. Despite the fact that we now live in a largely electronic world, people still respond to information that comes via traditional mail delivery. Here are some helpful hints about how to write a direct mail fundraising letter:
1. Be Creative
When you are approaching an individual requesting money or support for your non-profit, don’t bore them to tears. Make a compelling case about your charity and tell them your story. Chances are your charitable organization has done some great and very interesting work, so spread the word about that great work and offer a specific example or anecdote that will compel the reader to act now. Did your organization build a home for a family in need? Did your non-profit vaccinate a child in Uganda? Be specific, include personal or thought-provoking anecdotes, and tell a story in your fundraising letter.
2. A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words
Make your fundraising letter as visually stimulating as it is emotionally compelling. Including photos of the work that your charity has done—or even graphics and logos—will attract more attention that a plain vanilla letter.
3. Create A Package
Don’t just send off a fundraising letter and call it a day. At the very least, you will want to include the letter, a call to action (such as a post card that the recipient fills out with their donation), and a return envelope. Creating a fundraising package like including other materials such as a pamphlet or post card about your organization with your letter is always a good idea too. The more they know about your charity, the more like they are to be repeat donors.
4. Follow The Three C’s
When writing a direct mail fundraising letter, remember to follow the rule of the Three C’s: Be Clear, be Concise, and be Correct. You want to make sure that you are asking for something very specific from your reader. Use simple language that is easy to understand, and above all, remember to be accurate about the facts that you include in your letter.