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Mark Your Calendar: The Fundraising Summit (Free Online): Jan 5-9, 2015

I am honored to be part of The Fundraising Summit, online between January 5 and 9, 2015!

Join me and an expected audience of 80,000 from around the world for 5 days of insight, instruction and inspiration from over 40 of the world’s best speakers. Learn new ways to tackle your most pressing fundraising problems. Learn best practices from the best in national and international fundraising. Sessions are free, but only for 24 hours.

You don’t have to fly halfway around the world to hear the best speakers on fundraising. They are going to be online at The Fundraising Summit. Registration is free. Their advice is priceless.

Register today and get reminders when each free video goes online:

My session, “Top Tips for Great Grant Proposals,” will be free on January 5, 2015!

Here are a few of the 40 other amazing presenters you’ll hear:

  • Marcy Heim: Three Massive Mistakes that Even Smart Fundraisers Make in Raising Major Gifts
  • Jay Love: What Every Fundraiser Can do to Stop Falling Retention Rates
  • Sherry Truhlar: Steps to a Better Auction
  • Harry Freedman: How to Run a Profitable Special Event
  • Pamela Grow: The Power of Thank You
  • Linda Lysakowski, ACFRE: Raise More Money from Your Business Community
  • Gail Perry, CFRE: Teach Your Board to Open the Door to Major Gifts (without Being Pushy)
  • Marc Pitman: How to Fundraise as a CEO (and Learn to Love It)
  • Alice Ferris, ACFRE: Development from the Donor’s Perspective
  • Sandy Rees, CFRE: How to Raise Funds as a New Non-Profit

Register today and get reminders when each free video goes online!


Writing Wednesdays in December: Donor Thank You Letters Reviewed



A thank you letter can be either an administrative exercise or a powerful way to connect with your donors.  If it is done right, it will increase the likelihood that donors will continue to give, and say yes when you invite them to get more involved.  On this podcast we discussed 6 jobs that a thank you letter does, as well as several attributes of a good thank you letter.

We also reviewed these 5 Sample Thank You Letters and pointed out strengths and weaknesses.

paul jolly headshotOur Special Guest was Paul Jolly of JumpStart Growth. Paul worked as a fund raising professional for over 20 years before starting the consulting firm Jump Start Growth.  He began his career serving several Quaker institutions in one-person development offices, then moved to The Wilderness Society, where he was a one of six major gift officers.  His last job before launching Jump Start Growth was at the American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland.  In every instance, he has zeroed in on gifts from individuals at the top of the giving pyramid.  The focus of Paul’s consulting work is bringing sophisticated major gifts fund raising practices to organizations that are ready for dramatic expansion. His successes include leading three capital campaigns for organizations new to major gifts fund raising, securing millions of dollars in bequest and planned gift commitments, and bringing a laser-sharp focus on donors and increased vitality to small development departments. He is a regular contributor to the Guidestar blog, and is a popular workshop leader. Paul has a BA in English from the University of Maryland and is a not-yet-published poet.

Special Offer: If you would like a copy of the two articles that Paul mentioned on the podcast (on Acknowledging Gifts and The Sequence of Prospect Cultivation), please email him at: paul@jumpstartgrowth.com.

Find the December 2014 podcast in the ARCHIVE.


Free webinar: Publishing Your eBook for Greater Impact

frontstream logoLooking for a new way to attract and engage prospective donors and supporters? Today’s audiences bypass much of the hype of traditional advertising. Instead, they want relevant and useful content that they can act on right away. Are you offering them that?

Content-rich e-books can showcase your expertise while building your brand’s credibility and market reach. An e-book is an excellent way to deliver content directly to your target audience. Not only will you build visibility, but you will also carve out a niche as an ‘author’-ity in your field.

Vital components of your content marketing strategy, e-books know no bounds and can be recycled across all of your communication channels (online and offline). You’ll make a winning impression when you can say: “We wrote the book on that topic!”


  • Top 4 myths about today’s ebook publishing scene
  • Advice on how to write your ebook for the most impact
  • Introduction to independent publishing (what to expect and how to get started)
  • Complimentary resources for taking the next step (downloads)

Get the webinar recording HERE.

11/5 Webinar: Engage Investors with Powerful, Passionate Copywriting! (with Social Enterprise Alliance)

SEA-Bay Area logoCalling all social entrepreneurs:

Do you want to position your social enterprise work as cutting-edge and worthy of new investment? Do you want to become a respected thought leader in your field? In the marketplace of ideas, those who write well are seen as the “experts” at much more than putting words on a page. (The words “author” and “authority” come from the same Latin root!)

If you want your writing to more fully express your passion and tell your story in a fresher and more compelling way, this webinar is for you! We will share some strategic tools to help your words “land” as you intend.

Join us as we explore how to craft polished pieces that will help you reach a whole new level of effectiveness. You will leave inspired and equipped with powerful techniques you can use immediately.

In this interactive webinar you will learn:

1) The ABC’s of copywriting, including creating and advancing your brand, understanding your investors’ needs, and focusing on the benefits you offer

2) The top characteristics of effective copywriting and how to apply them

3) How to select stories that connect with investors

This webinar is based on my award-winning book, “Writing to Make a Difference: 25 Powerful Techniques to Boost Your Community Impact.” All webinar registrants are eligible for a special discount!

LEVEL: Beginner, Intermediate

Register HERE!

Hope to “see” you there!