Here’s some hard truth: most fundraising newsletters are boring.

They’re full of jargon and insider news that leave donors feeling less than connected.

To get your donors to read your newsletter from start to finish, it must include info that donors find interesting.

Put yourself in your donor’s shoes:  what would they care about?

What would make them take time from their busy life to pay attention to what you’ve put in print?  Here are some ideas for things you can write about that will keep your donors engaged.

  • Client story. Tell a story about someone whose life has been changed by your organization.  Keep it short and focused on the person – not your organization.  Use a good photo or two and your donor won’t be able to stop reading.
  • A Day in the Life. Share what a typical day looks like for one of your clients. This will help donors better understand the work you are doing and help them identify with the people you are serving.
  • Common myths. What are the common myths about your cause?  Dispell them by stating them and then giving the real information.
  • Testimonials. Let others do the talking for you.  Share a brief testimonial from a client, a donor, a volunteer, or a local celebrity about your organization.
  • Statistics. Share a couple of shocking statistics about your cause or the work your organization is doing.  Don’t go overboard here – one or two good facts with a tidbit of supporting info is all you need.

What have you included in your fundraising newsletter that got people talking?  Share with us so we can all benefit.

  1. Sandy, your content is spot-on with what all the marketing experts (both for corporate and nonprofit organizations) are saying. Thanks for simple, yet effective, advice that all those worthy causes out there can use!

    • Highlighting a volunteer or donor would probably work. I’d stay away from staff, because most donors don’t care about the staff, especially if they aren’t front-line staff. We need to keep the newsletter focused on what our donors are interested in.


  2. Laurie Ursiny says:

    Thanks for the great advice, Sandy. The July edition of our donor newsletter focused on planned giving and I included a brief comment from one of our volunteers who has a planned gift with us. So far, I’ve received some nice comments from our donors about this edition.

  3. Good list, Sandy, thanks for sharing it. If you are taking ideas for future posts, I’d suggest a “how to” for collecting testimonials. I occasionally see non-profits that miss the opportunity to collect testimonials when clients, donors or supports are eager to talk.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *