If you ask this question most people will lie to you. But not my mom. She’s the only person who will tell it to me straight when skinny jeans look more like pudgy jeans. It’s never mean-spirited and I value what she has to say. I trust her and I know that when she tells me something, it’s the truth.

Maybe you’d prefer someone to gloss over matters like a few extra pounds. But deep down, I know that just like I, you can sense when someone isn’t being authentic – whether its in the dressing room or the board room. And when someone doesn’t tell it to you straight – you lose trust in them.

Genuine and authentic communications are hard to come by — especially from non profit organizations. Let’s face it. Most organizational structures, review and approval processes, and legal reviews suck the authenticity and personality right out of the message. But not always.

Here are some excerpted examples of some “authentic” email communications that my mom would be proud of that I’ve recently crafted with AlterNet and Amnesty International. I hope these examples will help steer you in an authentic direction – even if your tone and issues are drastically different.

AlterNet email appeal

K, I’ve been nudging you for two weeks to give some dough to AlterNet. I’m asking because you are one of our readers who knows that investing in independent media is crucial to creating social change in the future.

Trust me, I wouldn’t be asking if we didn’t need the money to get the job done. It is crucial that we reach $50k in our Independence Day campaign in order to accomplish our annual goal of raising $200k in reader support. Otherwise, we face cutbacks. So far, we only have $40,000 in the door. Help us reach our $50K goal.

We give you a lot for your investment, including an archive of 41,000 articles of the best journalism and opinion you can find. We comb hundreds of sources, find great writers, and each week we give you:
40 new articles
10 strong columnists
15 provocative videos, and
50 outspoken blogs.

It all adds up to the broadest and deepest collection of progressive content on the web. And it’s all free to our readers.

Amnesty International integration email

Blogs, newspapers, magazines, TV — we’re constantly bombarded with information and sometimes it’s hard for the important messages to compete.

That’s where I come in. I’m Larry Cox, the Executive Director of Amnesty International. And I’d like to remind you about why you got involved with Amnesty International’s Instant Karma: The Campaign to Save Darfur.

Of course it’s about the music and its ability to carry our message of hope and human dignity to millions of people around the world.

But it’s also about the people involved — individuals like you joining forces with musicians and sharing your time to make a difference in the lives of children, women and men in Darfur.