Fluff hurt? Come on, how sensitive can you be you say? Well, imagine this scenario:
You develop an engagement opportunity for donors and community members. You ask participants to share thoughts about your nonprofit’s name, logo, and the messaging you use to describe your work. You invite straightforward input and receive a response that could be phrased this way
That’s fundraising fluff!
Ouch! Owee!! That hurt!!! What’s a nonprofit to do?
- Reach around and pat yourself on the back for being willing to seek opinions.
Too many nonprofits develop messaging that they never test with anyone. Maybe we’re all a bit like the Cowardly Lion from the Wizard of Oz who said:
There’s no denyin’, I’m just a dandy-lion
- Take a deep breath and ask yourself, is it true?
Is the message fluff? Are we avoiding using language about the things that happen to our clients because we are afraid of offending donors?
- Review and begin to rewrite your year-end appeal and run it by that person who called your copy “fundraising fluff.” If your copy can pass muster with this person it will inspire almost everyone.
As Tom Ahern noted in a newsletter, before you write you might take “The “Values’ Pledge”:
“I will remember that donors give for their own reasons, not our charity’s reasons.
Therefore, I will frequently remind my donors and prospects that they can express,
through their support of us, those values they already hold most dear.”
You are also welcome to contact me at email@example.com to discuss ways in which I might be able to assist.