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Kim Snyder
Kim Snyder Media

Writing Highly Effective Fundraising Copy, pt. 1





Everybody wants our money.  Your church, local charities, even your barista wants a little something extra in the tip jar.  Narrow down the list to those who you actually really want to give your money to and there will still be more hands than dollars. 

It's the same for every one of your listeners.  So how do you spring your station to the top of your listeners giving list?  Maybe that's the wrong question.


The real question we should be asking is, "How do we increase our listeners desire to support us?"

Every logical decision begins with an emotional motivation; If we do (X) then we will look better, appear smarter, seem nicer, etc.  It's no different with giving to a ministry like Christian Radio.  Our job is to take a tangible need, your financial goal, and present it in a way that it comes to life in the ear of the listener so they can't help but want to be a part of it.

In this three part series, I'm going to unwrap some ways to do just that.  But first, we start at the beginning.


Set the Stage

Ever notice how the title of an upcoming movie can make you see it just as much as the thumping music and action packed trailer?  When we see a title that's lame or overused we tend to assume that the movie will follow suit.

Think of your pledge drive in the same way.  What does "the (insert year here) (followed by call letters) share-a-thon" really say?  "We want your money...again."

Now consider who you are, what makes you special in your community, and the kinds of things people say about you over and over. 

These are the things people give to.  Create a title for your giving campaign that lets them know they have an opportunity to invest in what they already love.


 Tell Your Story

For years, the go-to way of soliciting funds was a "you'd better or else" mentality.   The starving children will die.  Jerry's kids will be left to fend for themselves.  A ministry will close up shop for good…this time.   Fear-based story telling was an effective fundraising tactic for a time, but not anymore.

It is crucial to tell the story of why you're asking for money but not so you can unwrap a threat.  Sharing the story of your need, your history and your plans for the future invites the listener to feel like they know you and establishes your track record.  And we're all more comfortable giving to those we know and trust.


Have three of your top tier people write a couple of paragraphs about who they think you are, why your station is important and what they see for your future. 

Compare them and look for common threads.  Take into consideration the buzzwords people tend to use when they talk about your station and you can quickly narrow down a concise list of phrases and keywords you can use as benchmarks in your donation copy campaign.


Next time I'll layout a few ideas for spreading out those gems in the most effective ways.


Kim Snyder has written. produced and voiced extensive pledge drive copy for the K-LOVE and Air1 Radio Networks, and donation appeals for Samaritan Purse, World Vision and many other donation based ministries.  Formally heard on the Air1 and KLOVE Radio Network's at EMF Broadcasting, she has written, produced and voiced thousands of pieces for nearly 500 stations and major network clients.  Her voice talent credits include Sprint, Hallmark, the NFL, Christian Dior and Disney.  Kim Snyder Media, provides imaging, tracking, voiceovers and production services for radio and multimedia.