Fundraising is an important part of any charity or campaign. An organizations ability to attract donors and garner financial support is a cornerstone of the success of the venture. Even the most noble and well-respected operations require solid fundraising and attractive ways to draw attention to their cause and contributions to their coffers. Keep in mind the fundamentals that comprise an effective fundraising campaign to create an effective fundraising appeal.
Fashioning a quality fundraising appeal begins with understanding the motivations of those you intend to reach for contribution. The first step in understanding your target contributors is to recognize the appeal of your organization. A human rights organization likely has goals that appeal to a wide variety of supporters. Another kind of organization might appeal to a smaller base of supporters, or niche market. One way to define your base support is to analyze the make-up of your previous supporters or those who support similar organizations.
Once you have a clear understanding of what kind of people are most receptive to your cause and what motivates those contributors, you are ready to create the appeal that will maximize the support level of those supporters and people like them.
Begin your appeal by revealing the state of your operation. Effective openings to an appeal include presenting a snapshot of where the organization stands at the time of the appeal. For example: “We are beginning our annual spring fundraising drive” or “Our holiday season drive is underway.” By framing the appeal in those ways you will set the scene and give purpose to your appeal.
Another valuable method for making an appeal is by recapping previous efforts and how the organization plans to match or exceed previous bests. By rehashing past results you will stoke emotions within the target that includes competitiveness and a sense of communal effort. Supporters will want to help break old records or be part of forging new grounds and meeting new challenges.
Some of the phrasing that you can use will do a great deal to encourage support. Be sure to use phrases such as “with your help” to give the supporter a sense of duty to do their part. Also, your closing is an important opportunity to ask for contribution while conveying a community responsibility. A solid and effective close can include a final appeal such as, “Can we count on your continued support with a contribution today?”