Is your fundraising copy fat?

Here’s some quick good copywriting advice from Bad Language: 10 ways to slim down obese copy:


  1. Zap filler text.
  2. Cut paragraphs before you cut sentences.
  3. Don’t lock down the word count before you start.
  4. Delete hype words, clichés, adjectives and adverbs.
  5. Shorter sentences.
  6. Use ‘you.’
  7. Give instructions.
  8. Shorten or delete quotations.
  9. Write with information.
  10. Use a bigger font (in your word processor; it’s harder to write lots of words if your screen fills up quicker.

It’s important to note that this is about “fat” copy, not long copy. In fundraising, long copy is almost always good. But fat, bloated, sloppy copy — not good. It’s not readable and it’s not persuasive. Slim it down.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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About the blogger

Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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