Books Nonprofits Should Read About Fundraising

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Books Nonprofits Should Read About Fundraising

 “Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.”
  -Margaret Fuller

Reading is knowing, the more you know, the more you can analyze and apply. 

Fundraising for nonprofits requires an in-depth knowledge of what works for which type of organization. In order to lead in the right direction, you as a nonprofit leader/professional must read right. With this article, GiveCentral intends to run you through 5 very insightful books that will help you improve your fundraising skills. Reading sure is a great place to start!

Building Donor Loyalty: The Fundraiser’s Guide to Increasing Lifetime Value

This book by Adrian Sargeant and Elaine Jay is a hands-on guide written solely to help professional fundraisers. It is based on data drawn from a research that included more than 20,000 nonprofit organizations, the research was funded by the Aspen Foundation and the Indiana Fund through the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University. The book outlines ways to keep donors committed to an organization and driving donor retention. It also offers tips and advice on how nonprofits can develop and generate donor value over time. It is a lot of information published in just 250 pages that makes it for a short and interesting read. 

Nonprofit Book: Building Donor Loyalty


The Network Nonprofit: Connecting with Social Media to Drive Change

Authored by Bath Kanter, Allison Fine and Randi Zuckerberg is truly a groundbreaking text. We now live in a world that is finely connected, this book directs nonprofit organizations towards a new way of operating in such a scenario. It is majorly about a networked approach made possible by technology, the internet and social media. 

Nonprofit Book: The Network Nonprofit


Call Sign Chaos: Learning to Lead

This book was published in 2019 and has been written by Jim Mattis and Bing West. “Wonderful” is the word as the book provides its audience with a clear-eyed account of learning how to lead in a world as chaotic as ours. In the words of Patrick Coleman, CEO, GiveCentral, “…the authors encourage leaders to be learners, to build great teams and to be willing to fail. Their acknowledgement of the willingness to fail is a great skill. They live what they believe in, by keeping a library of several thousand books — learning never stops. Lastly, they help in identifying the kind of team that is critical to the growth of a charity.”

Nonprofit Book: Call Sign Chaos


Asking Styles: Harness Your Personal Fundraising Power

At the heart of all fundraising for nonprofits, lies “the ask”. Asking for donations and support can be quite a task for nonprofit professionals especially when you want to experiment with different asking styles. This book by Andrea Kihlstedt shows its readers the best ways to ask for gifts by leveraging your personality traits. The asking style of your nonprofit organization and board members has a very big influence on the result of your fundraising campaign or even major gift programs. A toast to bringing your A game, this is yet another must read!

Nonprofit Book: Asking Styles


Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die

Authored by Chip and Dan Heath, this book is an amazing read for people who wish to harness the power of influencing other people. The authors unravel the factors that make an idea or a message “stick” and not fade away, it is a book that can help you change the way you communicate ideas, for good. It includes a series of success stories and failures, experiences to read and learn from. 

Nonprofit Book: Made to Stick



It is also important to remember that reading doesn’t necessarily have to be done individually. If you are an organization looking to grow your team towards better fundraising for nonprofits, you can consider having a group reading session once or twice a month. This way, you can learn and grow together; the best part is that this can even be done online on a video call. The session doesn’t have to be long, it could last just an hour and still be a very productive one. We hope that these books really help and assist you in your planning, working and functioning, all the very best!


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