A short, clear fundraising message to connect with donors’ hearts is crucial to raising funds and gathering support.

People need to understand what your nonprofit does and it needs to strike a chord in their heart before they’ll reach for their wallet.

Unfortunately, most nonprofit fundraising professionals haven’t spent the time to refine their message.

Instead of sharing something that stirs the prospect’s heart and soul, they regurgitate a long, boring, memorized spiel that’s way too focused on the organization. It’s “us, us, us, we, we, we.” It’s ego-centric and it doesn’t work. Who wants to hear that?

If you’re serious about raising more money and deepening donor relationships, you have to carve out the time to work on this.

Fundraising message 6 word exercise

Here’s an exercise I often do in workshops.

Think about what you say when someone asks “What does your nonprofit do?” Grab a pen and jot down your response.

Now, try it again, and use half the number of words.

If you’re sucking in air, I understand.fundraising message

It’s not as easy as it sounds to be brief.

In fact, it’s hard work to create something concise and inspiring to say.

Mark Twain, the great American writer, knew this. In fact, he said “If you want me to give you a two-hour presentation, I’m ready today. If you want a 5-minute speech, I’ll need two weeks to prepare.”

How much time are you currently spending preparing the fundraising message you share with donors and prospects?

If you’re like most people, you aren’t spending much time at all.  You’re using whatever pops you’re your head at the moment.

If you’re lucky, it resonates with your audience. If not, you’re boring them to tears.

Hmmm. Might need to spend a little more time on it, huh?

Back to the exercise. Got your half-sized introduction?

Good. Cut it in half again.

I’m serious!

You should be down to just a few words. These few words will help you bridge the heart-wallet connection.

Want a challenge? Try figuring out what to say about your nonprofit’s mission using 6 words or less.

It’s a great exercise to engage your brain and think about it in a new way.

Every word counts. Choose them carefully.

I’d love to know what you came up with! Click on “Comment” and tell us both your old way of describing your nonprofit and the new one.  Who knows, you might just win a prize!