Rewrite this fundraising letter P.S.

In direct mail (and sometimes email), the PS is the most important thing you write. It’s one of the most-read parts of your message. It’s worth spending some time on to make it really sing.

Here’s the P.S. from a fundraising letter I got the other day:

 P.S.      None of our acheivements could have been attained without the sustained and dedicated support of contributors like you.

The sentiment is good: “We can’t do it without you.”

Everything else about this P.S. is broken:


  • It’s abstract — not specifically about anything, just the idea.
  • The writing is stilted and awkward. Read it out loud: It’s almost a tongue-twister.
  • It looks like they used a thesaurus to pick the longest possible word in every place they had a choice.
  • Even though it’s aimed at donors, it’s also self-focused bragging.
    It’s good that it’s aimed at donors, but it should also have a call to action.

Who knew one 18-word sentence could make so many mistakes?

Think you could do it better? Let’s see your work in the comments!


Comments

18 responses to “Rewrite this fundraising letter P.S.”

  1. Wes Clark Avatar

    P.S. Right now your net is keeping mosquitoes away from an 8 year old boy in Liberia while he works on spelling homework in bed. How many more kids can you protect from malaria?
    P.S. The name on the building may be ABC Area Food Bank, but we think of it as (Donor Name)’s Grocery. You’re the one filling bags with food every week. We’ll keep the bags coming if you’ll help fill them. Deal?

  2. Wes Clark Avatar

    P.S. Right now your net is keeping mosquitoes away from an 8 year old boy in Liberia while he works on spelling homework in bed. How many more kids can you protect from malaria?
    P.S. The name on the building may be ABC Area Food Bank, but we think of it as (Donor Name)’s Grocery. You’re the one filling bags with food every week. We’ll keep the bags coming if you’ll help fill them. Deal?

  3. P.S.- You may not realize it, but when you helped us last time, you allowed us to

      accomplish this.

    (Make the words accomplish this a link to a page describing what was accomplished. And of course, provide another call to action on that page.)

  4. P.S.- You may not realize it, but when you helped us last time, you allowed us to

      accomplish this.

    (Make the words accomplish this a link to a page describing what was accomplished. And of course, provide another call to action on that page.)

  5. xxxMrs xyzxxx, remember — without the loyal support from friends like you we could never have made this critical project to xxxxxxxxxxxxspecificsxxxxxxxxx happen. Thank you for stepping up and standing with us.

  6. xxxMrs xyzxxx, remember — without the loyal support from friends like you we could never have made this critical project to xxxxxxxxxxxxspecificsxxxxxxxxx happen. Thank you for stepping up and standing with us.

  7. P.S. Ret. Sgt. Erik and his family could not have made the transition from 8 years of military service to their new life as civilians without your support of our services. Thank you!

  8. P.S. Ret. Sgt. Erik and his family could not have made the transition from 8 years of military service to their new life as civilians without your support of our services. Thank you!

  9. Tom Ahern Avatar

    [from a control that’s attracted 10,000 gifts for a hospital so far]
    PS — Hearing the words “thank you” from a patient means more to a caregiver than any prestigious accolade or award he or she can receive.
    If you wish, you can recognize a doctor, nurse or other caregiver through Sharp HealthCare Foundation’s Guardian Angel program. It will be a special way to honor someone who has touched your life in an important way. You can also make your Guardian Angel gift online. To do so, visit us at: http://www.sharp.com/guardianangel and select Sharp HealthCare Foundation.
    I hope you’ll read the enclosed note from Josh Denny, RN, Guardian Angel recipient.

  10. Tom Ahern Avatar

    [from a control that’s attracted 10,000 gifts for a hospital so far]
    PS — Hearing the words “thank you” from a patient means more to a caregiver than any prestigious accolade or award he or she can receive.
    If you wish, you can recognize a doctor, nurse or other caregiver through Sharp HealthCare Foundation’s Guardian Angel program. It will be a special way to honor someone who has touched your life in an important way. You can also make your Guardian Angel gift online. To do so, visit us at: http://www.sharp.com/guardianangel and select Sharp HealthCare Foundation.
    I hope you’ll read the enclosed note from Josh Denny, RN, Guardian Angel recipient.

  11. From my inbox:
    Eliza Olson:
    P.S. Thank you for your past gifts. It’s people like you who make our work possible.
    P.S. It’s people like you who make our work to save Burns Bog possible. Thank you.
    P.S. I really appreciate your help. I just couldn’t continue to work to save Burns Bog if you weren’t there all the way. Thank you.
    Alice Benson:
    P.S. Thank you for how you’ve made a difference in peoples’ lives! Can you help again?

  12. From my inbox:
    Eliza Olson:
    P.S. Thank you for your past gifts. It’s people like you who make our work possible.
    P.S. It’s people like you who make our work to save Burns Bog possible. Thank you.
    P.S. I really appreciate your help. I just couldn’t continue to work to save Burns Bog if you weren’t there all the way. Thank you.
    Alice Benson:
    P.S. Thank you for how you’ve made a difference in peoples’ lives! Can you help again?

  13. Maísa de Paiva Avatar
    Maísa de Paiva

    PS: *achievements

  14. Maísa de Paiva Avatar
    Maísa de Paiva

    PS: *achievements

  15. Rachel Bridge Avatar
    Rachel Bridge

    <>, your last gift helped Harry to receive vital therapy sessions. Can you help another child today with a gift of £12?

  16. Rachel Bridge Avatar
    Rachel Bridge

    <>, your last gift helped Harry to receive vital therapy sessions. Can you help another child today with a gift of £12?

  17. Thanks to donors like you, we served over xxxx meals to needy families.

  18. Thanks to donors like you, we served over xxxx meals to needy families.

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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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