Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Write that Fundraising Letter!

I signed up for the 3-Day walk, what next? Write.your.fundraising.letter. A good fundraising letter is going to get you a long way! Trust me. There used to be a time where I was afraid to ask people for a donation... and well now, I am pretty sure  fundraising extraordinaire should be added to my resume. Seriously, what is the worst someone can do? Delete your email and not make a donation? It never hurts to ask!

So lets write that Fundraising Letter!

The first place to start is in your participant center. There are several examples you can pull from and get ideas. Every year I have used one of Komens samples and made it my own. I have always sent letters via e-mail. This works for me, because 99% of the people I send a letter to use e-mail as their main form of communication. This might not be true for you, and I suggest using snail mail. Be creative and make your letter stand out! If I was mailing letters, I'd do all of these:
  • Use (pink) stationary
  • Pink envelopes, (I saw ribbon envelopes at Wal-Mart recently, 50 for $2, can't beat that!) 
  • Create your own return address labels
  • Include a picture of you and the person you are walking for/with
  • Copy of your donation form with an addressed and stamped return envelope
  • Last, maybe a spritz of perfume~I'm totally kidding here!
Now to writing the letter, this is my (rough) outline:
  • Greeting
  • Dates of the 2011 walk & mention previous walks
  • Why I walk & Who I am walking for
  • Discussion of the minimum fundraising goals & current stats
  • What you are doing to make a difference and why!
  • How to donate & where to make that donation
  • An advanced Thank You!
I create my fundraising letter in my participant center and e-mail it to myself. This way the links and 3-Day background are created for me. I then forward my letter on to everyone in my address book. And when I say everyone, I mean everyone! My family then forwards on my e-mail too. There have been occasions when I had to send out e-mails to find out who a donor was, so I could properly thank them. Don't be shy, your friends and family will surprise  you!

If you made it this far, here is my fundraising letter that I sent out just last week! Combined with the yard sale and this email, I have had a successful  fundraising week! Hope this helps you! Happy writing & fundraising!

Dear Support Crew,

I am coming to you again in hopes for you to join me in the fight to Cure Breast Cancer.

In October this year, I will take part in my third Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure. I had such incredible experiences completing the Atlanta 3-Day walk in 2008 & 2010 that I'm back for more! Committing to 60 miles in 3-days and a minimum fundraising obligation of $2300 is BOLD! I'm very excited for a new year, new team members and a new fight for the CURE!

I walk because I believe that no man or woman should have to have a cancer diagnosis. I walk so my mom continues to be cancer free and for our good friend Toni, to never have to endure another diagnosis or treatment again. Every 69 seconds, somewhere in the world a woman dies from Breast Cancer, I walk to change this. I walk so that we can live in a cancer free world and our future generations can study about cancer instead of live in a world with cancer. I am walking for those who cannot, and I will continue walking until we have a day when cancer is obsolete.

I need your help! Not just with donations, but also with your thoughts and prayers. Its not an easy journey to the finish line; I'm walking because I believe I can, and am making a difference in our strides to find a cure. So many wonderful people generously donated to me in 2008 & 2010, and I ask for you to please consider donating again this time around. I'm already 59% of the way there. Whether its $1, $5, $50 or even $2,300 your are doing something BOLD with me! If a one-time donation is not something you are able to do, the online donation form allows you to pay your donation in monthly installments. Also, remember many companies will match your donation. To see a list of companies that match gifts, click here.

This year I have been selected to be an Ambassador and represent Komen for the Cure. This is an honor that I could not be more excited about! I am spreading my story via social media; facebook, blogger and twitter. Twitter, something I thought I'd never be doing, but Komen asked and, well there is nothing I wouldn't do to get the word out. Please follow me on this amazing journey by following my blog: 60 Miles & Beyond and/or my Twitter feed @3DayCrystal.

Please follow the link below to visit my personal fundraising web page. If you don't want to donate online, you can download and print a donation form from that page that you can mail in with your donation. Thanks for all of your support. I'm very lucky to have a Support Crew like you in my life!

Crystal Canady Elster 

pink ribbon One woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every three minutes in the United States.

One thing, I did forget was to include a picture. If I had included one, this would be it:
This was taken at the finish of the 2010 Atlanta 3-Day walk. This is why I walk, to make sure this lady stays cancer free! Only thing that could make this picture better would have been a group hug with my mom.

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