12 free nonprofit books to help you achieve year-end fundraising success
It’s that time of year again, where we trade in our flip flops for sweaters and pumpkin-spiced lattes. Autumn brings more than a colorful display of leaves changing, though. It also signals the arrival of a season of significant generosity—with nearly 37% of giving occurring in the final three months of the year.
We’ve curated a nonprofit reading list to help your organization make the most out of this charitable time of year. Whether you’re looking to brush up on best practices for annual appeals, boost your fundraising game on social media this GivingTuesday, or build expert storytelling skills to win over supporters this giving season and beyond, we’ve got you covered with this list of 12 free nonprofit books.
Level up your annual fund appeals
Are you sending an annual fundraising appeal at the end of the year? So is almost every other nonprofit. Make sure that your appeal stands out by reading these four titles. These nonprofit fundraising books provide sample messaging and practical guidance to help you write appeals that resonate with your donors and compel them to support your organization.
- Perfect Phrases for Fundraising by Beverly Browning. This handy guide includes ready-to-use phrases that are sure to get results in your annual appeal—and in any other fundraising campaign.
- The Ask: How to Ask for Support for Your Nonprofit Cause, Creative Project, or Business Venture by Laura Fredricks. The hardest part of fundraising is making the ask. Read this book to gain confidence by learning tools, sample dialogues, and techniques to ask anyone, for any amount, for any purpose.
- The Annual Campaign by Erik J. Daubert. Get step-by-step guidance and practical tools for running an effective, well-coordinated annual giving campaign.
- How to Write Successful Fundraising Appeals by Mal Warwick. Dive into this classic to set yourself up for success with its proven approaches for compelling direct mail or online fundraising appeals.
Help donors find and give to your cause online
Fifty-five percent of people who interact with a nonprofit on social media take action, and of this group, 59% consider donating money as a result. It’s clear that a strong digital strategy is key for today’s end-of-year fundraising campaigns. If you’re looking to take your organization’s digital fundraising game to the next level, these titles can be the springboard to your success.
- From the Ground Up Digital Fundraising for Nonprofits by Brock Warner. Don’t know where to start with digital fundraising? Learn the fundamentals and best practices with this soup-to-nuts guide.
- Mobile for Good: A How-To Fundraising Guide for Nonprofits by Heather Mansfield. If people can’t engage with your organization on their phones, tablets, and through social media, you could be at a serious disadvantage. Build a mobile strategy now with the help of this book.
- The Networked Nonprofit: Connecting with Social Media to Drive Change by Beth Kanter and Allison H. Fine. Move beyond how to reach your audience on social media and learn why being connected online with your supporters matters.
- Social Change Anytime Everywhere: How to Implement Online Multichannel Strategies to Spark Advocacy, Raise Money, and Engage your Community by Allyson Kapin and Amy Sample Ward. This book contains helpful insights and real-world strategies to help you integrate your email, social media, and mobile communications that reach and resonate with supporters.
Unlock year-round giving success by telling the right story
Storytelling is at the heart of nonprofit fundraising. It humanizes your cause, evokes emotions, and makes missions memorable. Perhaps most importantly, it forges connections with potential donors and inspires them to action. If you’re not effectively telling the story of your nonprofit, these fundraising books will help you craft a compelling narrative.
- Storytelling: The Secret Sauce of Fundraising Success by Lynn Malzone Ierardi. Uncover the recipe, along with its key ingredients, for great storytelling with this engaging read.
- From So What? To So Funded! How nonprofits use stories to create impact and change the world by Lisa Gerber. Written by a master storyteller, this book shows you how to use stories to get people’s attention—and their donations.
- Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen by Donald Miller. This book can teach you how to incorporate a storytelling framework into your communications that shows supporters how they are the true heroes in advancing your cause.
- Story or Die: How to Use Brain Science to Engage, Persuade, and Change Minds in Business and in Life by Lisa Cron. Discover the science behind why stories are so powerful and how you can use them to inspire your supporters to take action—like donating to your cause.
We know how busy this time of year is for nonprofits, and Candid is here to provide you with the information and resources you need to finish the year strong.
We invite you to browse our free, public collection of eBooks and audiobooks on nonprofit leadership, fundraising, operations, and many related topics all year round.