Good stories vs relevant stories — and how you can make them part of your fundraising

Here’s an excerpt from a story in a fundraising message:

The puppy shivered in the winter cold. In his short life, he’s never eaten anything but garbage, and nobody had ever said a kind word to him. Until we came a long, picked him up, wrapped him in a blanket, and took him to our shelter for nutritious food, medical care, and good old TLC.

Not bad.

But really, who cares?

In the real life of the donor who might encounter this story in a piece of direct mail or email, it’s just a random story that has nothing to do with her! It’s one of hundreds of random stories that flash in front of her every day. It might get her attention. But that’s a matter of chance. And not very good odds!

So let’s make a few revisions to that story:

A puppy is shivering in the winter cold not so far from your home. In his short life, he’s never eaten anything but garbage, and nobody had ever said a kind word to him. Until you decide to help him. Your kindness will pick him up, wrap him in a blanket, and take him to our shelter for nutritious food, medical care, and good old TLC.

This is one of the things you’ll learn if you take my 4-part Moceanic masterclass called Irresistible Communications for Great Nonprofits. Which is still open for registration.

Better yet, there’s an exclusive offer for readers of this blog to get $100 off the usual fee.

  • Just use the checkout code FFN100.
  • And do so before the end of November 18.

What you’ll get are four masterclass sessions about the most important things you need to know about communicating with your donors (and other audiences) in any medium.

If you get good value from this blog, I think you’ll love the masterclass! There’s also a lot of useful bonus materials, access to a community area with your fellow students (who are the smartest and most curious fundraisers all over the world), and two live Q & A sessions with me and Sean Triner.

You can take it at your own time and at your own pace. And whether you’re in the depth of the year-end craziness or not, you’ll pick up ways to raise a lot more money! I’ve seen organizations double their revenue, triple it, or even more by following the principles of communication you’ll get from this course!

At any rate, you are taking no risk. There’s a money-back guarantee. If you don’t get what you want from the course, we don’t want you to pay!

Click here to learn more and to sign up for Irresistible Communications for Great Nonprofits.


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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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