Aryeh Zev Narrow, a Spring Valley, NY communications consultant, helps non-profits create powerful marketing and fundraising messages. You can learn more about non-profit marketing and fundraising messages on Aryeh Zev’s blog: The Spark.
The Talmud says, “if you try to grab too much, you end up grabbing nothing.”
Fundraising can be a competitive business, and some organizations try to show their colors by advertising all their accomplishments. But in today’s cluttered media world, less is usually more.
Let’s say you need a fundraising letter, brochure, or website. Fight the urge to give the reader a laundry list of your services or activities. These may be impressive on a resume, but for marketing literature, it’s boring. You can’t overwhelm your donors into supporting you. You can usually create a much more powerful case for supporting your organization by simplifying your message.
For starters, pick your one or two top areas of activity. Make them crystal clear, and align your organization with them boldly. For example, instead of highlighting the number of classes you offer or the number of students who attend, point out your most popular class and its impact on peoples lives.
Next, develop that message with a story. Stories tickle the emotions; lots of research proves they make fundraising (and selling) easier. So to continue our example, you might tell us Sandra’s story… how she joined your most popular class last June, and today she’s a whole new person in this way and that way… That’s a simple, powerful message that may keep the reader’s attention much longer.
Of course, I’m not suggesting you change your programming—only that if you simplify your marketing and fundraising messages, you can make them more engaging. Hatzlacha with all of your fundraising efforts!
Picture via Tracy Olson