The Fundraiser’s Toolbox

You know that fundraising is hard work. To be successful you need to be well equipped to take on all its challenges. At SOFII, we thought you might like some help. So we’ve put together this fundraiser’s toolbox that we’ll be filling with essential examples, formats, articles, case studies, ideas and tips that we think every fundraiser should know about.

Jerry Huntsinger: 80-years young

by Gwen Chapman

Jerry Huntsinger celebrated his eightieth birthday in July 2013. Since 1965, there has never been a year when he hasn’t had at least one control package being mailed nationally by a major nonprofit organisation. What an achievement.

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The wit and wisdom of George Smith. Good: the case for a re-launch

by George Smith

In a prescient excerpt from Up Smith Creek, George Smith muses on the concept of doing good and we should triumph over evil in increasingly cynical times.

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‘…written with such a wit and lightness of touch that not a page is boring.’ - Drayton Bird reviews Up Smith Creek

by Drayton Bird

As we continue our celebration of the wit and wisdom of George Smith we bring you this review of the superb collection Up Smith Creek by famed marketing expert Drayton Bird.

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How to master the soft skills of fundraising

by Stephanie Dotto

There are many opinions and articles out there on how to approach donors and win them to your cause with hard skills, but in this article, Stephanie Dotto of CharityJob explores the softer skills that are too often overlooked.

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Tutorial 1: creating fundraising letters and packages

by Jerry Huntsinger

The purpose of these tutorials is to stimulate your thinking. Challenge your preconceived notions. Stimulate your appetite for testing a new idea.

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Tutorial 2: is direct mail fundraising a science or an art?

by Jerry Huntsinger

It is a little of both. If you are a writer assigned to create fundraising letters, then you have to deal with feelings, intuition, motivation. Direct mail is a personal form of communication. And communication occurs only when you reach out and touch a person at a deep level.

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Tutorial 3: what makes a successful letter-writer?

by Jerry Huntsinger

A successful letter-writer must overcome human inertia by putting words on paper. A tough job. Good letter-writers are extremely rare, but here’s how you can spot one.

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Tutorial 4: motivation, magic and junk mail.

by Jerry Huntsinger

A few motivations often listed in textbook approaches to fundraising.

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Tutorial 5: what’s all this talk about junk mail?

by Jerry Huntsinger

Mail opening in most households is a time of great anticipation. And since the advent of email and electronic communications, the arrival of snail mail has become a high point of the day. You most likely know someone who laments that they no longer receive letter mail.

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Tutorial 6: the power of a letter.

by Jerry Huntsinger

To be successful in this business, you have to recognise the power of a letter. Why? Because there are now so many people in fundraising who understand computers, finance, business management, or work flow systems. All of these skills are basic to competent fundraising organisations. But what’s happened to the letter?

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