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Tap into the power of NOW

I’m sure you’re a nice person.  Polite and well-mannered – you’d never dream of cutting someone off in traffic or butting into the front of the line.  But when it comes to writing direct mail or email copy for your next fundraising campaign – YOU NEED TO GET PUSHY!

Think of yourself as one person in a very long line of organizations waiting to present your case to the donor or prospect.  Sure you can wait patiently and hope there’s still money available when your time comes.  Good luck with that strategy.  And good luck finding a new job in this economy.  Polite is
good, but you’ve also got to stand up and be noticed.

So how do you get your message the attention it deserves?

Welcome to the power of NOW.  You need to give donors a reason to push your cause to the front of the line and the way to do that is to create urgency.  Sounds good right? So how do you do that?

The best way to create urgency is to have some legitimate reason why funds are needed right away.
Such as:

        “All gifts received by May 1st will be matched by a generous benefactor.”

        “Winter is approaching fast and we need to buy blankets for the homeless.”

        “School starts next month and we need to purchase supplies.”

        For example, note the Matching Gift Campaign and the eye-catching red block on this response form:


However, even if there is no real compelling reason to create urgency you can still create urgency through language.  Using words like NOW, TODAY, PLEASE HURRY, etc. will have dramatic impact.
Another good way is to set a campaign deadline.  It doesn’t have to be a meaningful deadline and you don’t have to explain it but having a deadline helps to build urgency and that lifts response rates. I usually like to set deadlines for direct mail campaigns about 30 days after I expect a mailing to arrive in home.  For email campaigns, it should be even shorter – 15 days at the most.  However, with email you should also test “by midnight tonight!”

Here’s what NOT to do: Recently, I received a fundraising request that said “Don’t worry you’ve got plenty of time to give.  Our campaign doesn’t end until December 31st.”  What??!!  I’m sure the person who wrote that letter is a very nice person and would probably make a great customer service representative.  But they should never again be allowed anywhere near your fundraising copy!

Katapult MarketingTap into the power of NOW