Tips for writing stronger fundraising copy

Here are a whole bunch of fundraising copy tips from Karen Zapp’s Nonprofit Blog: Keep it Simple. Keep it Friendly.

Here are most of them:


  • Speak (I mean out loud) what you want to write. Then write what you said; how you said it.
  • Write the P.S. first – your offer
  • Don’t be a nit.jpgck grammarian.
  • It’s NOT about your nonprofit
  • Hero of your mission is the donor or member. Make this clear in your copy.
  • Use a larger font, and one that’s easy to read
  • Black (not gray) colored font on white background is the easiest to read; body of your copy ought to be black on white
  • Short sentences. Short paragraphs.
  • Letters should not look like a business letter. Indent paragraphs. Do not justify margins.
  • Highlight key passages (bold; italics; or underlining)
  • Tell a great story – master this art
  • Clear call-to-action
  • Use emotion, passion, and opinions
  • Write for skimmers
  • Employ direct response principles
  • Show how donors make a difference


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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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