How to Write a Fundraising Email to Boost Donations

This article will show examples of engaging fundraising email templates and best practices to increase open and reply rates and boost donations.

fundraising email template

One struggle with fundraising initiatives is—well, raising funds. But in today’s digital world, there are more opportunities than ever to connect with potential donors and secure the financial backing you need. One of the most effective ways to do this is through email.

But not just any email will do. You can have the most incredible cause, but finding the right words to capture your potential donors’ attention and inspire them to give can be challenging. So, how do you do it?

Reading this guide will teach you how to write a fundraising email that will actually bring in the money.

  • Best Practices for Writing Fundraising Emails
  • Fundraising Email Template for a General Audience
  • Charity Event Invitation / Reminder Email Template
  • Fundraising Email Template for Existing Donors
  • Fundraising Email Template for Media and Press
  • How to Use Social Proof in Fundraising Emails

Fundraising Email Best Practices

Here are some tips to prevent your emails from staying unread, or worse, deleted from your target donors:

Personalize It: Nothing beats a well-thought-out email. A personal touch to your template can go a long way. You can also use personal finder tools to segment your audience correctly and customize messaging according to demographics, location, etc.

Craft A Compelling Subject Line: Make a lasting impression through your subject line to increase your open email rate. Remember, you don't want your cold emails to sound cold. You can use these examples with approachable subject lines to encourage replies.

Explain The Purpose of A Contribution: Explain the "why" to your audience. Be transparent with your goal to show that any amount they give can make a big difference. You can back it up with social proof for a sure-fire way of getting a response.

Add Value: While philanthropy is a major deciding factor to donate, your audience might still look for the program's value. For example, donors can get instant membership or access to your future events and volunteer activities if they give a certain amount. You can also filter your reply rate audience so they feel privileged to get complete information about your project.

Use Real Examples: You are more likely to get donations when you build on trust. Share real stories of changed lives instead of impressive statistics. Your email content should evoke an emotional response in your audiences to inspire them to help.

Be Brief: The key is to keep it short but concise. Be direct and add visuals so the information you share is easier to digest. If possible, section your paragraphs or add subheads highlighting the important details your prospects should take away from your email.

5 Fundraising Email Templates to Boost Donations

Now that you are equipped with helpful tips for your email content, here are five examples of fundraising email templates to try depending on your target market:

Email Template for a General Audience

Subject: Will you help us make a difference?
Hi Claire,
We've been keeping you updated on the progress of our initiative to raise funds for our local outreach in the province of [location].
Thanks to our ever-supportive community, we are closer to our goal – only $100,000 left with a month to go.
Any amount will be a huge help! We hope you can partner with us to make our vision a reality.
It will only take seconds to make a difference. You may click here to donate.

Email Template for Charity Event Invitation or Reminder

Subject: Will I see you at the 10K run this Friday, Tricia?
Hi Tricia,
Hope Inc.'s 10K run has over 500 registrations and counting!
Registration is free, but we'd be grateful for any amount you can donate before or during the event. All proceeds from this event will go to the Hope Foundation.
The event starts at 6 AM, and the assembly will be in the Charity Hall.
Will I see you there? Click here to register.

Email Template for Existing Donors

Subject: Thank you for today, Bianca
Thanks to you, we packed over 500 school supply kits for the students of St. Therese High School.
Feel free to share snaps of today's outreach posted on our social media accounts. You can also add #STHOutreach so we can showcase your incredible efforts to make this initiative happen.
Be on the lookout for our exclusive events and opportunities on Facebook and Instagram.
Thank you for spending time with us. See you on our next project, Bianca!
STH Outreach Team

Email Template for Media and Press

Subject line: We can be partners for change, Glen
Hi Glen,
I came across your story about the alarming cases of malnutrition in (location). I wanted to share our own story with you: [insert fundraiser link]
The Young Lives Program aims to help children in poverty-stricken areas access proper education and nutrition. Since 2005, we have organized over 100+ charity events, and malnutrition is one issue we would like to address.
So far, the organization has raised over $ 1,000,000 to help us make regular feeding programs across the local communities in the region. We hope to do more, and I believe this partnership can help make this happen.
Thank you for taking the time to know about our project, and I'd be happy to share more details with you.
[Your name]
[Your contact info]

Email Template with Testimonials

Subject: Can you spare a minute for me, Bryan?
Preview Text: I want to share what encouraged me to join the SaveTheChildren Foundation
Hi Bryan,
I know you were captivated by the STC Foundation because of your love for the youth. I am grateful for your generosity in volunteering with our programs. Sharing your story has inspired me to do the same.
I shared my first volunteer experience in this video. I think you'll relate well to the clip at 1:30, where I shared my journey and why the program's vision aligns with mine.
We will also have another outreach this weekend. I hope you can make it. I would love to discuss our shared experiences and the motivation behind volunteering at the STC.
I'll be there Saturday from 2 to 5 PM. Let me know if you are free, so I can add you to the list.
I can't wait to see you, and thanks for listening to my story!

Key Takeaways

Email is one of the practical tools you can use to garner more donations for your organization. Reaching your prospects is one thing. Doing it the right way is another.

Alongside carefully crafted email templates, these pointers can come in handy to achieve the best results:

  • Personalize Content
  • Create a Unique Subject Line
  • Add Value and Purpose
  • Tell Your Story
  • Keep It Short and Simple