Do direct appeal letters work? Yes, IF they are written correctly. Today on my Monday Mornings With Mark The Stewardship Coach Webinar I taught on how to write an effective appeal letter. As you come near the end of summer you might find yourself behind budget. A direct appeal might help close that gap.
Here are some key elements to an effective appeal letter…
- Make the appeal appealing! I once got a letter from a church I was attending asking me to help pay the electric bill. No joke. That was the essence of the letter from this church that had a nearly $2 million dollar budget. Even if you need funds to pay the electric bill find a way to tell your story of missions and ministry impact.
- Start the letter off with a bang. One of my clients once started his end of year appeal with this sentence, “I cannot let that woman die…” He had me at hello! The letter went on to share how woman in Zambia were dying in childbirth and how safe and secure birthing centers were needed. My client raised enough with that one letter to help build a birthing center. If your letter doesn’t start off with a compelling sentence or paragraph no one will bother to read the rest of it.
- Use bold and underlined text. People skim letters so you want to draw their attention to the points that are important. I use bold and underlined text to highlight the important elements of the letter.
- Always use a PS. Studies show that the PS is the most read piece of the entire letter so I make sure I have a PS.
- Take the time to write a well crafted letter. Too many letters are after thoughts. Think through how to make your letter more effective and readable. The results will speak for themselves.
These are some of the key things you need for your next appeal letter. However there are many others. Members to Giving365 get my help in editing their letters and making them more appealing. To find out more go to http://giving365.com/
Now is a great time to get out a direct appeal letter so that you can make up whatever shortfall your summer giving has experienced. I help churches all across America from large to small do exactly that. Let me help you!
Mark Brooks – The Stewardship Coach
PS. See what I mean? A PS almost always get read. Here is mine, for only $1 you can try out Giving365 for 14 days! You will find sample letters, tons of offering talks as well as my weekly newsletter called, “The Stewardship Coach.” Go here to find out more http://giving365.com/2015/06/15/giving-365-introductory-special-14-days-for-1-00/