Herschell Gordon Lewis’ Lessons for Fundraising

Herschell Gordon Lewis passed away recently. He was known as the “Godfather of Gore” for his campy movies.

But more importantly, he will always be remembered a master of direct-response copywriting, both for business and for nonprofits. See my guest post at Future Fundraising Now.

Among his many lessons for fundraisers, there are three that stand out:

  • It’s about “you,” the donor – not about “us,” the organization.
  • Use the motivators – fear, exclusivity, greed, guilt, and need for approval.
  • The best fundraising is episodic – it presents anecdotes, narratives, and events to donors.

This barely scratches the surface of Lewis’ wisdom on fundraising.

If you’re a student of copywriting and fundraising, then you should count Lewis, along with legends like John Caples, as one of your teachers. See the guest post here.

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