Inform, Inspire, Galvanize: 4 Development Writing Tips

Every gift has a story.

But one of the biggest challenges in fundraising is telling that story in a way that resonates with donors. What are the best ways to craft compelling stories across channels? How do communicators make their writing pop?

Here are four guiding principles from top CASE resources—plus, learn about our upcoming CASE Asia-Pacific Development Writing Workshop, an opportunity to hone writing skills.

  1. Specific stories have more impact than abstract ones. People respond more to clear, understandable, personal stories. Learn more about giving motivations in, “10 Reasons Why People Give (and 5 Reasons They Don’t),” from December 2016 Currents.
  2. The messenger may matter as much as the message. Consider how to weave in voices from students, alumni, parents, faculty and donors. See how several institutions did that in “Making Strides,” from the Currents archive.
  3. Weave in classic storytelling elements—including obstacles. Good stories need drama and a solid resolution. Learn more in, “The Storytelling Error Nonprofits Make—and How to Avoid It,” from September 2015 BriefCASE, and, “Novel Ways” from the Currents archive.
  4. There are plenty of ways to report impact. Say, for instance, a gift was given a long time ago or is planned but hasn’t yet happened. Get creative to explain these gifts’ importance with ideas from “The World’s Best Stewardship Ideas” from July/August 2016 Currents.

Plus, find a wealth of resources in our CASE Library’s collection on case statements, campaign communications and development communications.

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Development Writing Workshop

Looking for ways to make your writing pop? Want to communicate in a way that resonates with donors (and increase chances of sponsorship)?

Enter storytelling: the most effective way to communicate and raise funds.

This November, CASE Asia-Pacific is offering the intensive Development Writing Workshop. Learn to communicate “the ask” and package your writing in exciting, strategic ways. Hone your hidden journalism skills, delve into the soul of a gift and find ways to build a narrative around it in this in-depth, two-day boot camp.

Learn more and register here.

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