Help donors climb Charity Mountain

Superman
Superman was on to something with his iconic battle cry, Up, up, and away! As reported in Scientific American: Why Escalators Bring out the Best in People, several studies that linked upward motion with virtuous behavior, including this one:

… twice as many mall shoppers who had just ridden an up escalator contributed to the Salvation Army than shoppers who had just ridden the down escalator.

Don’t conclude too much from this, but I think it hints that using the imagery of upward motion and height is likely to be good fundraising.

Find reasons to use verbs like:

  • Climb
  • Ascend
  • Soar
  • Rise
  • Fly
  • Take Off

And nouns like:

  • Mountain
  • Hill
  • Heavens
  • Sky
  • Flight

Make your copy feel like the equivalent of riding up an escalator. Or leaping heroically into the sky like Superman. When your readers see that donation bucket at the top, they may be a little more likely to give.

Thanks to Transformational Giving for the tip — which added the astute observation that it might be smart to hold your luncheon or other fundraising event on the second floor of the venue rather than the ground floor.


Comments

4 responses to “Help donors climb Charity Mountain”

  1. Isn’t it just that people going up escalators have finished shopping and feel guilty at maxing out their credit card and so donate more often to the Sally Army than those yet to shop?

  2. Isn’t it just that people going up escalators have finished shopping and feel guilty at maxing out their credit card and so donate more often to the Sally Army than those yet to shop?

  3. I think you’re on to something. That’s why all the stores on the third level have higher price tags! (Well, it works that way in Sydney’s Queen Victoria Building at any rate)

  4. I think you’re on to something. That’s why all the stores on the third level have higher price tags! (Well, it works that way in Sydney’s Queen Victoria Building at any rate)

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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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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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