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You are the sunshine β˜€οΈ of our life

Published 10 months agoΒ β€’Β 2 min read

Mama mia, you're a fundraising queen β€” party on! We're just popping in with the 88th issue of the Fundraising Writing Newsletter. If it's not too much trouble, please pass this along to some lovely someone, like a message in a bottle just to say, "I don't need no stinking rescuing. I'm good. You good?" (They can ​subscribe here for free.)

In this issue:

  • You are the sunshine β˜€οΈ of our life
  • Randomly yours: to inspire and recharge you

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Hi Reader,

When you're preparing to write and send donor comms, it might be helpful to think of your supporters as sleepwalking to the mailbox or the inbox.

Life ain't easy, usually, so we sometimes sort of sleepwalk through the hard parts, which keeps our brains on an emotional leash.

One way to wake up and let loose is with a good song.

Your fundraising messaging will at times need to sound serious or formal. But that approach is seldom memorable. It rarely delivers a love tap to your warm-fuzzy-happy bone.

Meanwhile, reading a popular song title or lyric is like how a nice tickle feels for a person who enjoys being tickled. It accesses some treasured mental real estate. It activates some good ole fashioned nostalgia. Lo, verily, it rocks.

So look for opportunities...

E.g.,

Instead of "We appreciate you" β€” try


You are the sunshine β˜€οΈ of our life

See the difference? Feel the difference?

"We appreciate you" is basically boring, serious, chilly, formal, forgettable. Also, it starts with "we" and ends with "you." (Prioritize your audience, not yourself.)

"You are the sunshine of our life" is seriously warmer, fuzzier, happier. Even if your cause deals with a grim topic, you're still communicating with real live people who prefer to feel better rather than worse, where possible.

5 ways might you apply this in your donor comms:

  1. In your email subject lines β€” e.g., the subject line for this email you hold in your hot little hands.
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  2. In your outer envelope teaser copy β€” e.g., "Get up, stand up! Don’t give up the fight!"
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  3. In your thank-you letters β€” e.g., "Thank you for being a friend."
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  4. In your newsletters and gratitude reports β€” e.g., "Your love keeps lifting families higher and higher."​
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  5. In any of your appeal letters that include at least some lighter elements of story or messaging β€” e.g., "What's love got to do with it? Everything!"

Remember: donors are people too. Like you and me, they appreciate good vibrations. So β€” whenever possible β€” it's good to make them feel like waking up dancing! πŸ’ƒπŸ½


Randomly yours: to inspire and recharge you

For your brain, heart, and funny bone...

  • Fundraisingly Informative β€” How to appeal like a Girl Scout by Mary Cahalane (a lovely blog post about the many ways in which Girl Scout cookie sales can inspire and improve your fundraising appeal writing)
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  • Fundraisingly Hilarious β€” "Remember when our donor ate potpourri? πŸ‘€" by Lynne Wester + T. Clay Buck (a 21-minute podcast episode in which a donor eats potpourri at an event, and extreme measures are then taken to contain the situation)
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  • Nostalgically Fantastic β€” Steven Spielberg Reveals His Reaction to Drew's Playboy Spread Years After E.T. Made Her Famous via The Drew Barrymore Show (an 11-minute video excerpt that is actually quite heartwarming and far better than the clickbaity title makes it sound)
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  • Simply Foundational β€” How to live a meaningful life by Daniel Schmachtenberger (a thought-provoking 1-page blog post about how to create for yourself a virtuous cycle of being, doing, and becoming)
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  • Irresistibly Carnivalesque β€” Apparently via Songify This! (a 2-minute YouTube video in which an adorable boy at a carnival is interviewed about what it was like the first time he went on one of the rides... and his words are used as the lyrics for an amusing little ditty)

Until next time: May your fundraising writing be filled with soul β€” so your donors feel all giving-groovy and bust a philanthropic move!

All our best,

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Hi! We're Julie Cooper and Brett Cooper, fundraising copywriters for great causes. Does your fundraising bring in as much money as it could? You can send donor communications that stir hearts to action. We'd love to help. πŸ’› Start by subscribing to our FREE weekly newsletter.

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