Fundraising letters are some of the most difficult letters to write. When asking anyone for money, one must ensure that they are especially careful not to come off offensive. This rule more so applies to both business and personal letters for donations. A great deal of funding from not for profit organizations comes from people making donations. So, it is significant to build and maintain a healthy relationship with the prospective donors. The correct message is vital in the letter. Leaving a good impression is imperative.
The Stationery and Every Little Detail
A fundraising letter will be scrutinized by the person receiving it. One of the first things they will notice is the type of paper that it is printed on. A successful organization, one they feel like they should donate too, will use fine stationary and will always have a proper letterhead. They will also be quick to notice if the letter has hand written or printed by a computer. The attention to every little detail can go a long way with potential donors.
Statics show that people are more likely to give money to an organization that takes time to hand write a fundraising letter. Not only does it give a more professional image, but it adds a level of personalization to it. A company must never send a letter that is not on some sort of letterhead. Always use a traditional tri-fold and put the letter in a crisp white envelope.
How The Letter Should Be Written:
After attention has been paid to every detail, it’s time to write the letter. There should always be a proper salutation both at the beginning and end of the letter. In some instances, the person in charge of donations may not be known, so it will have to be addresses accordingly. If the person in charge of donations name is known, then the letter should be addressed by their name and official title.
When drafting the body of the letter, put a little bit of background information about the company in it. The potential donor will want a brief history to know if it is something they feel comfortable donating too. Don’t go overboard and give the entire history, but just briefly go over what this not for profit companies history. Make sure to put this in the first paragraph. Also, make sure to include if this company or person has made previous donations to thank them for their past contributions before requesting additional support.
After all the proper etiquette of this type of a letter has been followed, it’s time to get down to business. Let the person know what is needed and why. If donations are needed, like food and clothing, tell them what they will be used for. If money is needed, some prefer to put a dollar amount into the letter to let their donors know their goal. Also make sure to remind them of the tax write offs that they this donation will qualify for. Sign the letter by hand and with proper titles. Please see sample below for more detail.
Sample Fundraising letter for Nonprofits
April 29, 2016
Hoffman Construction Company
1234 Simian Lane
Huntington, WV 26520
Dear Mr. Hoffman,
I'm writing on behalf of Charity Works, a non-profit organization that helps the homeless people around the Huntington, WV area. By writing this letter, I hope to persuade you to make a donation to an organization that is always willing to lend a helping hand. You can join the many people who are already helping us with our valuable work in the area.
I would like to introduce Charity Works to you. We are a large organization that strives to make sure homeless people have food as well as basic hygiene items. We make every effort to offer them shelter when we can. Through the generous donations, by people and establishments such as yourself, we are able to help the less fortune to meet some of their basic needs.
This year, we are branching out into a new direction, and want to help homeless children with their education. If your company can donate $1,000 this would help us reach our community goal of $20,000. Or, if you would like, you can specifically sponsor two children at the Huntington Elementary school. Your donation will help to ensure a bright future of a less fortunate child.
Checks can be mailed and addressed to the address below. Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact me for more information. Thank you for your time.
2345 Barber Rd.
Huntington, WV 26541