BRIEF: Make a Bigger Impact by Saying Less [Book Review]

Nonprofits do some pretty complex work. As a communications professional, it’s your job to simplify that work into language and images that others can understand and be motivated by — in as few words as possible. In his new book, Brief: Make a Bigger Impact by Saying Less (Amazon link),  Joe McCormack argues that being brief…

How to Perform the “You” Test for Donor-Centered Communications – Do You Pass?

You know that donor-centered communications are vital to getting and keeping your supporters. During the coaching and feedback sessions for our fundraising writing e-clinics with Tom Ahern, he uses this little trick to instantly see how many times nonprofits address the supporter specifically by seeing how many times they use the word “you” in their…

If You Write Direct Mail Appeals In-House, You’ll Want to Know About This

If you have been part of our community for any length of time, you know Tom Ahern and how awesome he is at writing fundraising copy – especially direct mail appeals. (If you are new here, “Welcome!”) In fact, his direct mail appeal e-clinic has been the most popular e-clinic we offer and consistently sells…

Pro Tip – Check How Easy Your Text Is to Read in Word

Here’s a quick tip for you today on using Microsoft Word to check how easy it is for your supporters to read your communications. Word has the ability to let you know your Flesch Reading Ease score and your Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level. You just have to turn it on! Wait, what? The Flesch Reading Ease score…

Write a Better Case for Support and Direct Mail Appeals

Fundraising expert Tom Ahern is cranking out some great stuff for us this year! We just finished his Donor Newsletters That Raise More Money e-clinic and July brings two more training opportunities for you. The Case for Support Writing a Fabulous Case for Support starts July 9th. You can join us for just the first…

Mixed Links for Nonprofit Marketers and Communicators

Has this seemed like a long week to anyone else? I am ready for some Mixed Links… Starting things off on a lighter note (Kivi and I thought it was funny, though, if cursing bothers you, best skip this), here are 21 Things You Say In Work Emails, And What They Really Mean. This time of year…

How to Use Our Writing Prompts to Build Donor Engagement (Hint: Be creative and have fun!)

Are you one of the 8,381 people subscribed to our Monthly Nonprofit Writing Prompts E-Newsletter? Kate Snyder of SHIM is and wanted to share a creative idea they got after receiving our prompts earlier this year. We will send prompts for the month of July next week, so sign up now! ~Kristina Guest Post by…

Jargon Jam: Think Tank Launches Wonky Word Wednesdays

On our trip across Montana last week teaching nonprofits about clear, consistent, and compelling messaging, we heard some great examples of nonprofits doing their best to make the complicated work they do more easy to understand. One of those examples came from Tara Jensen, director of public affairs at the Montana Budget & Policy Center (MBPC).…

Live from Montana – Clear, Consistent, and Compelling Messaging

Kivi and I are being graciously hosted by the Montana Nonprofit Association this week as we help nonprofits create clearer and more compelling communications. We are doing workshops in Billings, Helena, and Missoula. We began our week with a 5:30 a.m. EST wake up call (which was actually 3:30 a.m. in Montana…eek!). I got held…