It’s November already and in the midst of planning for your AGM and reporting on the last appeal, you realise; I need to write a Christmas appeal that works… is it too late?
With these exact jobs magically flooding into my inbox over the last couple of weeks, I’d like to encourage you that if you’re frantically trying to piece something together in-house or think you have missed the boat, let me assure you, there’s still time.
But you’re going to want to act snappy. So here’s a few tips to help you speed up the process.
Write down the basic strategy on an A4 paper.
Put a quick A4 together on your end-of-year campaign that includes:
- Targets and objectives
- Which parts of your programs or projects the money raised will support
- Key messages/themes
- Components of the pack
- An internal timeline
Engage the right people.
This one is key. Make sure you run your strategy past the key people across your organisation. Ensure they are happy to proceed.
At this point you can reach out to suppliers who can quickly produce copy, design, web components, printing and mailhouse functions.
Keep it simple… but not that simple.
In regards to what you include in the pack, how much testing you try with a last-minute appeal or variations to different segments… keep it simple. If you don’t have time to do it properly, don’t try and rush it. Mistakes in these areas can render the tests as inaccurate or cost you excess dollars with no money in return.
So in this sense, yes simplicity can be best.
However, the opposite is true for defining your ask. If you are going to use words like ‘bring hope’, ‘save a life’ or ‘help a child’ this Christmas, then be sure to expand on what that looks like.
Paint a picture in the reader’s mind of what that hope, or saving or help will actually look like in tangible descriptions. Better yet, use those words instead. You can read more about this in my blog three big reasons you shouldn’t be writing your own copy.
All it takes is one powerful story.
I left this point to last. And for a good reason too.
If there’s one thing you should be taking time on, please, sift through all those beautiful beneficiary stories and project reports that you have. Find those stories of real people who were in real need and who found real solutions through your programs.
With a bit of background on their situation, a good quote here or there, your writer has everything they need to get the ball rolling and help you turnaround a Christmas appeal that will work.
If this article has interested you and you’re needing to send out an appeal before it’s too late, feel free to get in touch. I’d be happy to see how I can help you with your campaign writing needs.