If you want to raise more money from your donation request letter, then you have to make donating convenient. You’ve put a lot of time, effort, and money into mailing a great fundraising letter to your donor list. Why lose donations by making your donors jump through hoops to give you money?
Fundraising consultant Alan Sharpe explains how “convenience” is the key to maximizing donations from any type of donor appeal. By making it more convenient for your donors to give money, you will get more donations, plain and simple.
Raise More Donations With Fundraising Letters by Making it Convenient For Donors to Respond
I had a client who wanted to drive prospective customers to his online store using a postcard. Great idea, I thought, and cost effective.
He had a terrific product, a compelling offer, and a sound business model. He had just one problem. He wanted to make all website visitors register before they could browse his product catalog. Big mistake.
So I, along with his business partner, managed to talk him out of the idea. And he was glad that we did.
That’s because one of the fundamental requirements of direct mail is that you make it easy for your prospects, customers and donors to respond. The word to remember is “convenience.” You must make responding as convenient as possible. Here are some ways to do that with your donors.
- Print your donor’s name and address on it so the donor doesn’t have to.
- If your donors must complete part of the card, give them enough space (most direct mail donors are over 60 and can’t read or write without glasses).
- Pay for return postage so your donors don’t have to hunt for a stamp.
- Print your return address on the return envelope.
- Place coupons at the outside corners of the page (not in the gutter or the middle of the page), where they are easy to tear out.
- Perforate the edges of tear-out coupons with a fine perf, not a coarse one, so they are easy to tear out.
- Offer as many payment options as possible without paralyzing your reader.
- Accept all the major credit cards.
- Accept cheques.
- Accept recurring monthly donations.
- Accept donations by telephone (toll-free, of course).
- Accept donations by mail.
- Accept donations on your website.
One of the beautiful things about donating by mail is the convenience. But that is only true if the direct mail donating experience is convenient. Use some of these methods to improve your convenience quotient and your donors will thank you for it-with their gifts.
About The Author
Alan Sharpe, CFRE, is a fundraising practitioner, author, trainer and speaker. Through his weekly newsletter, books, handbooks and workshops, Alan helps not-for-profit organizations worldwide to acquire more donors, raise more funds and build stronger relationships. As the Director of Direct Development with The Gideons International In Canada, Alan manages their direct mail, major gifts and planned giving programs. Sign up for “Alan Sharpe’s Fundraising Pointers,” Alan’s free, weekly, email newsletter, at www.raisersharpe.com.
More Donation Request Letter Tips
The Art Of The Ask – No matter what type of fundraising you are doing, you have to do the ask. The Art Of The Ask varies depending on how you’re raising funds – in person, online, in an appeal letter, or in an email – but it all comes down to getting people to donate money to your cause.
The 4 C’s Of Donation Letter Reply Devices – Your donation letter reply device must follow the 4 C’s – It must be Clear, Complete, Compelling, and Convenient. Failing to follow the 4 C’s of donation letter reply devices means that you have defective instrument, i.e. that your reply device is weak and ineffective at maximizing donations.
Five Fundraising Letter Tips – When writing a fundraising letter, there are five things you should do to get more donations. These 5 tips for writing fundraising letters are all about communicating directly with your reader in an engaging manner that captures their interest.
Fundraising Donation Request Letters – Donation request letters work best if they have AIDA. Learn a lesson from professional direct mail copywriters. They follow a time-tested format in their sales letters, one that you can also follow when writing direct mail fundraising letters for your non-for-profit organization. All you need to remember is AIDA: Attraction, Interest, Desire, and Action.