What’s In My Mailbox | Are grandmas really angels in training? A before and after year-end appeal!

December 6, 2017


In November, an emergency appeal letter came in from Diana Russell, Director of Fund Development at Maria Stein Shrine of the Holy Relics, a “place of peace, prayer, and hospitality,” based in Ohio. I’ve worked with them before, and they are a Basics & More Alum. Diana asked if I could liven up their appeal, which was the first one to ever be written without a live interview. The time frame? The letter was headed to the printers the next day. The rewrite was a quick one and took just over an hour.

So how did I go about energizing their letter? I injected it with a donor focus…

1. Relatability. I made Father John’s story more relatable to the reader/donor by bringing it back to their perspective (“Can you imagine Grandma Mabel’s joy…”).
2. Audience awareness. I spoke directly to Catholic supporters who fear that their faith may not live on.
3. Additional level of engagement. I invited donors to share their stories about how their grandparent might have influenced their spiritual journey.
4. Personalization. Because they were using a mailing house, I instructed Diana to pull her top donors for mailing and to make it personal. She used first class postage and affixed individual post-it notes to letters going out to those donors.

Check out out by clicking on the the mailing below…

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Katy Teson December 6, 2017 at 11:56 am

This is such a great example (and powerful appeal). Thanks for sharing your work! I always look forward to these posts.

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