The Art of Chunking: An Online Writing Essential

When people read on paper, they usually start at the beginning and work their way through in a linear fashion from page one to page two to page three, etc. When people read on the Web, however, they start where Google sent them, and that could be anywhere on your website. Once they get there,…

What Nonprofits Can Learn from Corporate Storytelling Books

I’ve been reading several books on storytelling, most of which were written for a corporate audience, in search of great advice and tips for nonprofits. I’ll share some of the best stuff during this Wednesday’s webinar, “What Should We Write About? Storytelling Ideas for Nonprofits,” and in future posts here. But for now, here is…

How to Get Reporters Interested in You: Cut the Bull

Claire Meyerhoff Last month, Claire Meyerhoff called to interview me about nonprofit storytelling for some articles she is working on, and we ended up having an hour-and-a-half chat about how hard it is for so many nonprofits to get press coverage, even though they have such great stories to tell. We shared all kinds of…

Using Stories in Your Annual Report; Webinar on Thursday

Using stories in your nonprofit annual report is a great way to bring to life what might otherwise be some stiff writing on your activities and accomplishments. But simply throwing some stories into the text won’t do. You need to be very focused and highly selective about which stories you use and how you tell…

Nonprofit Marketing as Gift Giving: Which Gifter Are You?

One the biggest challenges organizations face when trying to improve their nonprofit marketing programs is to stop thinking about themselves and to focus on their audience instead. One analogy I use in my nonprofit training courses is gift giving. With the holidays still in our short-term memories, you’ll recognize some of the five types of…

Nonprofit Taglines: So Few Words, So Much Angst

Nonprofit tagline writing can be a tough business. It’s a bit easier for short-term campaigns, but when you are picking the handful of words that will be next to your logo for years on end, it’s a rather daunting task. Before I spout off about a few nonprofit taglines that grabbed my attention recently, I…

Webinar: Dos and Don’ts of Writing for the Web and E-Newsletters

Do you know the important differences between how people read on paper and how they read on a computer screen? Do you understand how those differences drastically change the way you should write for your website visitors and email newsletter readers? If you aren’t sure, I’ll show you how to go from confused to confident…

Anatomy of a Direct Mail Makeover: Lessons from Cal

This is the fifth in a five-post series on a direct mail make-over currently being tested by the University of California at Berkeley (Cal). Read Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 This week I have chronicled the story of how Cal’s fundraisers took a new approach to turning alumni into…

Anatomy of a Direct Mail Makeover: Connect with Donors

This is the fourth in a five-post series on a direct mail make-over currently being tested by the University of California at Berkeley (Cal). Read Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | This is Part 4 | Part 5 The direct mail makeover by Cal fundraisers highlights the cultural contributions of alumni and…

Anatomy of a Direct Mail Makeover: Knead Until It Shines

This is the second in a five-post series on a direct mail make-over currently being tested by the University of California at Berkeley (Cal). Read Part 1 | This is Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 The fundraisers at Cal have decided to break away from their standard business letter…

Anatomy of a Direct Mail Makeover: The Value in Listening

This is the first in a five-post series on a direct mail make-over currently being tested by the University of California at Berkeley (Cal), my alma mater. Read Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 The fundraisers at Cal had a problem: they needed to raise more money from alumni to…