Pamela Grow's new ebook kept me engrossed during the holiday weekend. I curled up on the couch with iPad in hand and a glass of wine nearby. Both the ebook and the wine were very nice. The ebook only reinforced the high regard I already had for Pamela. And not only because I admire anyone who can write something longer than a blog post...although I do.
Pamela Grow is known throughout nonprofit circles as:
- a generous sharer - Pamela is always on the prowl for good resources about fundraising and then shares them on her website, in her newsletter, and on her social networks. She never hesitates to send her readers wherever they need to go for the best instruction and advice. Just like Pamela's donor-centric approach to fundraising, her mode of instruction is all about you, not her.
- a veteran of the small development shop wars - Pamela has been there and done it all. Her early jobs in development were with small organizations that could go nowhere but up. She took full advantage of those opportunities...writing, creating, networking, and always learning from her organizations' clients, donors, and the array of mentors she sought out.
- a fabulous writer - Pamela started out in sales and marketing, and she must have been really good at it. She brought to her nonprofit work the ability to connect with a customer (or donor) on a heartfelt, personal level. She writes as though she is having a chat with you over a cup of coffee at her dining room table or comparing notes after your grocery carts collided at the store. That kind of writing takes empathy...the ability to walk in someone else's shoes and find just the right words to connect.
Pamela brings all of these attributes together in her new ebook, Simple Development Systems: Successful fundraising for the one-person shop.
Small development shops in nonprofit organizations are more numerous than you might think. There are nearly a million 501(c)(3) charitable organizations in the US, and most are very small. Most people in fundraising either start their careers in small organizations or spend some time there along the way.
It can be scary, lonely, and stressful. In her book, Pamela shares her story of being, and recreating, a one-person shop as well as the stories of the many clients she has helped as a nonprofit consultant who specializes in the development issues facing small organizations.
The result is a road map to success that can take the scary out and bring in a sense of comfort, self-confidence, and focus about what can and should be done.
Pamela's book focuses on donor-centric fundraising. She covers what to do in your first 100 days as a development director, donor profiles, newsletters, direct mail, how to thank donors, monthly giving programs, grant seeking, building a website, choosing a donor database, and social media. She includes links to a couple of webinars by other experts, a toolkit with templates that you can instantly use, and a list of the best resources that she has curated.
I especially like the "Assignments" that Pamela sprinkles throughout the book, allowing for some practice using the resources in the toolkit. And I really loved the "Tales from the Trenches" that appear throughout the text, which are vignettes of Pamela's own experiences and those of her clients.
The nice thing about ebooks is that they contain links and can be updated frequently. Pamela promises that you'll be notified when she updates the book so it can become a permanent resource that you'll want to keep in a prominent place within your computer and on your mobile devices. I have my copy on my iPad, sitting on the shelf in my iBook collection.
Consider buying Simple Development Systems: Successful fundraising for the one-person shop. But, at the very least, do get on Pamela's newsletter list at her website and follow her on Twitter. Pamela also is the creator and manager of #smNPchat on Twitter that is for small nonprofits. Check it out every other Friday.
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Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.