Fundraising and Marketing.
every nonprofit organization knows: Without supporters,
your mission is doomed. Your nonprofit will need to
launch successful fundraising campaigns to raise public
support and donations.
is more important now than ever. Our nation is in a
recession, and nonprofit organizations are facing tougher
competition for supporters than ever. But especially
in tough times, it is critical that your nonprofit keep
its name, its mission and its achievements in the public
eye. You’ll be surprised at how generous people can
be. And when the economy turns around, you’ll be front
cheapest, least labor-intensive fundraising campaigns—those
that don’t require much spending or a large number of
volunteers—utilize the resources you already have. This
means your Web site, your newsletter or e-newsletter
and email, in addition to free publication in magazines,
newspapers and Internet publications.
thanks to the Internet and online fundraising, many
fundraising campaigns are very affordable. Nonprofits
can take advantage of several different types of affordable—effective—fundraising
If you’re having trouble raising
support, why not ask those whom your organization has
helped to help you help others?
stories communicate your mission through the
eyes of those who have already benefited. Success stories
are a powerful way of illustrating the good that your
organization is doing every day.
stories are especially effective for nonprofit organizations.
Your donors want to do good in the world—not just try
to prevent the bad. Sharing positive stories that are
the direct result of your organization’s efforts is
a great way to generate long-term support.
is a success story? Success stories, also called case
studies in business, are one of the most effective—and most underused—fundraising
methods for nonprofits. A success story is a highly
readable, personal account that highlights one of your
organization’s recent successes.
stories are usually 2-4 pages. They may include testimonials
from the recipients of your services, direct quotes
from organization members, specific details about an
instance in which your group met its mission, and the
positive results your efforts have brought about.
example, if your nonprofit is involved in healthcare,
a success story would highlight an individual or a group
who was recently helped by your services.
your nonprofit builds homes for homeless families, a
success story would profile a family who recently moved
into one of your homes. It would tell their ‘before’
story, how your organization found them, how you helped
them, and the family’s positive outcome as a result.
your nonprofit is involved in addiction recovery, a
case study would profile a recovering addict who has
received your services.
if your nonprofit is involved in conservation, a case
study might highlight an example of how a particular
species has benefited from your efforts, or how you
helped preserve some natural habitat by having it declared
a designated sanctuary.
can my nonprofit use success stories to raise support? Success stories are extremely
versatile. In fact, it’s hard to think of a single piece
of written material that can be used in so many different
ways for fundraising and public awareness. A compelling,
well-written success story can bring a significant return
on your investment. Once you have written a success
story for your nonprofit, or hired someone to do so,
get the maximum mileage by using it in the following
Hired Gun Writing, our nonprofit success stories are
always engaging and inspiring—but never sappy, guilt-inducing
or generic pleas for money. Simply put, we bring your
mission to life.
- As a feature on your Web site, with easy links to donation/volunteer
- As an article in your regular Newsletter/ E-Newsletter
- In educational materials and presentations
- In grant proposals and progress reports
- In mailings or e-mailings to members or potential donors
- As an article (bylined by an organization executive)
in magazine, newspaper or other print or online publications
- Submit it to magazine editors as a query for a full-length
our experience in journalism, we quickly and accurately
grasp the important and unique benefits of your mission—and
bring that out when interviewing your staff and the
recipients of your services.
Gun success stories make a genuine impact. Your readers
will remember your organization and its efforts. And
they’ll be inspired to join the mission.
feature articles about your nonprofit may be published
in magazines, newspapers, or other print or online publications.
Often, success stories can be used to query magazine
editors and serve as a foot in the door for a full-length
can also publish feature articles on your Web site,
in your newsletter or gazette, or elsewhere in your
organization’s promotional literature.
articles help keep your name in the public sphere. Getting
your article into a reputable publication will help
build your organization’s credibility. Features inform
your audience of the need for your organization, illustrate
your good works, and call readers to action.
feature article is also a great way to introduce a new
Hired Gun, our award-winning writers excel at crafting
high-quality feature articles. Our articles get great
responses from readers and raise support for your mission.
Our experience in journalism also means Hired Gun feature
articles are more likely to be published in key magazines
or other media.
mail/Direct E-mail. Direct mail can be an effective
fundraising tool for nonprofits. Given the amount of
junk mail people get, your direct mail piece must capture
your audience immediately. You must communicate your
mission—and its importance—in only a few strategic paragraphs.
Your direct mail must be engaging, informative and compel
readers to act.
direct email campaigns may be even more effective than
traditional direct mail. While the content remains roughly
the same, direct email can include direct links to the
donation page of your Web site. Plus, with email you
avoid postage costs and get your message out immediately.
very important part of a successful direct email campaign
is the subject line. The few words in your email’s subject
line can make or break your campaign. To increase the
odds that recipients will open and read your email,
make sure they know from the subject line that your
message will be worth their time.
may want to include helpful, relevant tips in your email,
and reference these in the subject line. Using personal
words, like ‘ours’ and ‘yours,’ helps to foster a connection
and increases the chance a recipient will open your
email. Be careful not to make subject lines too long
so that they’re cut off in a recipient’s inbox display.
Be sure to include a reason why the recipient must open
the email now. Otherwise, if they put it off, perhaps
intending to get to it later, they’re apt to forget
about it and leave it sitting in their inbox.
If your nonprofit does not publish a regular newsletter
or electronic newsletter, you’re missing out on a prime
opportunity to keep your supporters involved, and to
engage new supporters.
on how much news your organization has to communicate,
a newsletter or e-newsletter can be sent out at quarterly,
monthly, or other intervals. The number and length of
articles will also vary from nonprofit to nonprofit.
possible, link the content of your (e)newsletter to
current events so your stories are especially relevant.
Include a mix of informative articles on issues related
to your mission, and those that highlight your organization’s
recent works. Always include information about how to
donate or volunteer.
you send an e-newsletter, include direct links to the
donations page of your Web site. Also make sure your
Web site visitors see how to sign up to receive your
Hired Gun, we’re uniquely qualified to create original, engaging
newsletters and e-newsletters for your organization
at any interval you feel is suitable.
us today to learn how Hired Gun can help your nonprofit reach out to supporters and further its mission with effective, engaging success stories, feature articles and fundraising materials.
Request a free, no obligation estimate to find out how affordable professional marketing materials are when you hire Hired Gun.
samples of our work for nonprofits.
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fundraising tips for nonprofits.
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