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5 campaign messaging tactics to boost fundraising results

March 05, 2021
A nonprofit professional writes on sticky notes attached to a whiteboard to discuss campaign messaging tactics with two colleagues.

Many nonprofit fundraising campaigns start out with a lot of momentum and then gradually lose steam. This is likely because, when your nonprofit organization first shares a new campaign with your supporters, they will either donate immediately or put it off for another time. Without being reminded through continuous marketing, they might forget to donate altogether.

As you can only further your nonprofit’s purpose with the assistance of your donors’ funds, donor communications are essential to your nonprofit’s success. Research your donor groups and craft your messages to them carefully.

1. Be personal and direct

To connect more closely with your supporters and potentially turn them into donors, make sure your communications are personal and direct. Here are a few strategies to consider:

  • Send thoughtful and personalized emails to supporters.
  • Acknowledge donors by their first name.
  • Clearly explain exactly how you want them to take action.
  • Share one of your beneficiaries’ stories with a photo or video.
  • Always express gratitude for their support.

Remember that your supporters’ time is valuable, so they will appreciate an email that gets straight to the point. Also, ensure that your online donation process is streamlined to better serve your donors.

2. Be solution-oriented

Keep your emails short, to the point, and focused on your main objective. Ask yourself if your message answers the following questions: 

  1. What problem are you informing supporters about?
  2. Why should supporters care about this?
  3. What is your organization doing about the problem?
  4. What can supporters do to help?
  5. Why do supporters need to do this now?
  6. What is your nonprofit’s proof of success?

Answering these questions will give donors a better understanding of what your nonprofit is trying to achieve and why it’s important. Consider also informing your donors what exactly their money will be going towards.

3. Be donor-centric

Although your nonprofit’s purpose is important, the best way into a donor’s heart is appealing directly to them and reinforcing that they are important too. Here are some ways you can make your communications donor-centric:

  • Mention “you” more than “I” or “we” in your messaging.
  • Treat your donors like the heroes of your campaign.
  • Show your appreciation for donors who make gifts, such as by sending a personalized thank-you note or video.

Everyone likes to feel special. By reinforcing that your organization values each of your donors, you can form a stronger connection with them. This can lead to increased donations and higher supporter engagement rates.

4. Encourage peer promotion

One of the ways supporters can help further your nonprofit’s purpose in addition to donating is by helping you spread the word about your fundraising campaigns. Here are a few ways you can encourage campaign promotion:

  • Provide a link to your campaign and ask supporters to share it.
  • Let them know the importance of their outreach.
  • Encourage sharing via email and social media.

Sometimes, supporters want to help your campaign but aren’t able to make a donation. Asking them to share your nonprofit’s website or campaign page is a great alternative, as it lets them aid you in another way.

5. Be frequent and consistent

While you might feel self-conscious about the number of emails you send or phone calls you make to supporters, frequency is important for donor communications. Here are a few tips for making your messages more consistent:

  • Keep in mind that people who truly care about your cause want to be updated regularly.
  • Don’t automatically assume you’re reaching out too much.
  • Have a consistent format and brand for your messaging.
  • Designate specific days and times to send emails and post on social media.

Repetition is a powerful tool when it comes to memory retention. In order to make your nonprofit memorable, reach out to your donors multiple times. Consider communicating your campaign messages through multiple channels, such as through phone calls, emails, and social media posts, to reinforce your message.

Clear messaging leads to increased support

It is crucial for your nonprofit organization to effectively convey your cause as a need your donors’ generous support can help fill. Your supporters genuinely care about your purpose and want to help, whether that be through monetary or in-kind donations. Implementing these messaging tactics can boost your fundraising results and encourage your donors to make gifts.

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