Deciding what to write when creating a donor solicitation letter can seem so easy and in reality, it can be really tough. You know what you want, but what is the right way to ask for it? We have all received thousands of these letters, and most of the time, know in advance what they will say. What all these letters seek is engagement with the reader, something in them that causes the reader to think past the credit card part and see the future
They Want To See What You Do
Your prospects and donors are not buying necessarily what it is you do, what they want is why you are doing it. They want to see what you see: a world with less violence, cleaner rivers, or special needs kids’ programs thriving and fewer homeless animals. Your supporters want to see what you see and that you are working to make that future at least one step closer.
If you are selling a hammer, you are not selling a tool, you are selling the house that hammer can help create. You are not selling a ticket for a gala fundraiser; you are selling the chance to make a difference for something important. Your request for support needs to show what that future can look like and how they can be part of it.
Not Begging, Hat in Hand
There is tremendous honor in stepping out and asking for support, dollars, for a better present and future. It is not begging or asking for a handout. Take pride in the fact that you are willing to find the actual funds necessary to make the changes your organization wants to see come true. Tell them why you do what you do, and how their support brings that vision so much closer to reality.