40 Fundraising Blogs You Should Be Reading in 2015

blog-mosaic

Keeping up with every quality piece of content published by and for fundraisers on the web every day would be a full time job in and of itself. There’s absolutely no way you could read it all.

While there are many very well-known speakers and writers who boast tens of thousands of daily readers and followers, we wanted to highlight some lesser-known hidden gems – as well as some long-established publishers – that may change the way you think about and perform your job.

Here are the top 40 fundraising blogs (in no particular order) you should be reading in 2015:

1. Agents of Good – John Lepp and have set the bar for quality in direct mail, print and design. They write all about how to show love to donors (yes, you can show love with direct mail).

2. John Haydon – John is my go-to for nonprofit Facebook advice and strategies, but you’ll find lots more content on social media, email and digital here as well.

3. The Agitator – Roger Craver and crew’s content is worth paying for. Subscribe. It’s worth it. I’ll reimburse you if you disagree.

4. Ignited Fundraising – Lori L. Jacobwith is a master storyteller who has helped nonprofit organizations raise over $250 million from individual donors. Enough said.

5. Communicated! Consulting – Dennis Fischman will help you win loyal donors through better communication (something we aren’t that great at).

6. Pursuant – Daily posts from The Digital Drip allow Pursuant to offer timely advice to all levels of fundraisers.

7. ThirdSectorLabs – Data doesn’t have to scary. If you’re thinking about a database migration or just need some maintenance tips, check these guys out.

8. Fundraising Success Magazine – FSM features multiple blogs from recurring columnists. Don’t miss articles from Jeffy Jowdy or Larry C Johnson!

9. Joyaux Associates – Not much more can be said about Simone Joyaux, ACFRE beyond the universal praise and admiration the sector has for her. She is the godmother of fund development, board development and strategic planning, and everyone should do whatever she says – all the time.

10. Colludo – Occasionally personal, often irreverent and always poignant thoughts from Sheena Greer and husband Phil will help you not suck. Gratitude, cursing, mugshots – we all need more Twitter friends like Sheena.

11. Future Fundraising Now – Jeff Brooks is to the nonprofit sector what Seth Godin is to the for-profit sector. His posts are short on word count, but long on substance.

12. The Storytelling Nonprofit – Vanessa Chase is one of a handful of experts working hard to help fundraisers become better storytellers. Why should you care about storytelling? Vanessa will tell you.

13. Fundraiser Grrl – For a daily does of laughter, check Fundraiser Grrl’s crowd-sourced collection of gifs. Actually, just set it as your homepage now.

14. Fired-Up Fundraising – Gail Perry, MBA, CFRE offers free articles on her blog in addition to a paid Insiders program with content from dozens of nonprofit pros.

15. ChangeFundraising.com – Simon Scriver’s blog cuts through the crap and tells it like it is.

16. Bloomerang – Forgive us for the shameless plug, but we’re proud of the content here.

17. Nonprofit Hub – NPHub maintains a full-time staff of editors and writers, supercharged by outside expert contributors. They even have a print magazine that they’ll send to your physical mailbox for free!

18. npENGAGE – This labor of love brought to you by Blackbaud is glutted with blog posts, webinars, benchmark reports and eBooks.

19. Nonprofit Marketing Guide – Kivi Leroux Miller is my go-to for social media, email and content advice for nonprofits. She wrote the book on content marketing for nonprofits.

20. Huffington Post Impact – In addition to high-profile op-eds, this slice of HuffPo often publishes watchdog content, new data and sector news not found anywhere else.

21. Nonprofit With Balls – As the title suggests, this blog doesn’t shy away from bold opinions and edgy ideas.

22. Getting Attention – Nancy Schwartz wants to help you become a better marketer, and maintains one of the most robust nonprofit marketing/communications job boards on the web.

23. Hands-On Fundraising, LLC – I love that Mary Cahalane is all about gratitude, and she backs up her advice with real life examples from organizations who get it right.

24. The Fundraising Authority – Joe Garecht is just a down-to-earth, no-nonsense kind of guy who knows what it’s like to be a fundraiser. He’s the kind of guy who thoughtfully engages his readers in the comments section, even the ones who disagree with him.

25. Ahern Communications – Tom Ahern is the leading expert on donor communications, focusing on donor-centricity. His is the #1 newsletter you should subscribe to on the web. Period.

26. Clairification – Don’t miss Claire Axelrad’s weekly round-up – Charity Click-It- for the best mix of fundraising advice you may have missed.

27. Fundraising Effectiveness Project – They haven’t started blogging yet, but this brand new website from FEP is one to watch.

28. Donor Dreams – Erik Anderson is just a super smart, funny and all-around nice person.

29. Wild Woman Fundraising – Author of several books on fundraising and social media, it’s no wonder that Mazarine Treyz is a sought-after speaker and webinar presenter. Her newsletter always delights, especially when it contains the occasional Quentin Tarantino or Harry Potter reference.

30. Nonprofit.About.com – Joanne Fritz owns this corner of About.com with practical advice on a variety of topics.

31. GuideStar – Everyone knows GuideStar as a directory of nonprofit data, but their blog is all about helping nonprofit professionals and their supporters become more effective and efficient.

32. Know Your Own Bone – Museum and cultural center fundraisers need to know Colleen Dilenschneider.

33. re: charity – By day, Brady Josephson hustles for Chimp, but still finds time to publish his thoughts on leadership, management and fundraising here (when he isn’t writing for The Huffington Post).

34. 101 fundraising – This “crowdblog” brings together numerous well-known experts and practitioners, including Ken Burnett, Daryl Upsall, Tom Ahern and Rory Green. The heated discussions in the comments section are a can’t-miss!

35. The Fundraising Coach – Marc Pitman is all about helping you (and your co-workers and your board) get over the fear of asking for money.

36. A Direct Solution – Erica Waasdorp literally wrote the book on monthly giving. She blogs about direct marketing and fundraising here.

37. Donor Relations Guru – As a working higher-ed fundraiser, Lynne Wester doesn’t have to share all of her knowledge, but she does anyway. Don’t miss her LinkedIn posts

37. CauseVox – CauseVox should be your go-to source for all things peer-to-peer and crowdfunding.

38. Simple Development Systems – Pamela Grow’s blog has too many awards to list here, and the pace at which she publishes amazing free advice is almost worrisome.

39. AFP Blog: Recent News of Note – The Association of Fundraising Professionals Fundraising Resource Center gathers industry news and curates only the finest content from many of the blogs on this list.

40. Big Duck – Farra Trompeter has assembled a dream team who take a special focus on brandraising, campaigns, and training,

If you haven’t already, bookmark these blogs, subscribe via email or RSS and follow the authors on social media. You’ll be glad you did.

Who did I miss? Who are you reading (or writing!) that should be on the list? Let me know in the comments below!

** update ** I missed so many that I shouldn’t have – the PND blog, Plymouth University’s Critical Fundraising, the incomparable Sandy Rees, my circle city friend Jeremy Hatch, Beth Ann Locke aka FundraiserBeth, Derrick Feldmann and team over at Achieve, and Mark Phillips’ blog queer ideas. Please keep commenting!

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Steven Shattuck

Steven Shattuck

Chief Engagement Officer at Bloomerang
Steven Shattuck is Chief Engagement Officer at Bloomerang. A prolific writer and speaker, Steven is a contributor to "Fundraising Principles and Practice: Second Edition" and volunteers his time on the Project Work Group of the Fundraising Effectiveness Project and is an AFP Center for Fundraising Innovation (CFI) committee member.
Steven Shattuck
By |2017-06-10T19:11:35-04:00December 17th, 2014|Nonprofit Sector|

33 Comments

  1. John Lepp December 17, 2014 at 10:27 am - Reply

    Steven! thank you so much for including our blog! It’s an amazing feeling to be amongst the crème de la crème of blogs and bloggers… two others I would respectfully suggest be added or for folks to take a look at would be the amazingly insightful and informative – Mark Phillips blog at: http://www.queerideas.co.uk – the second would be the talented and knowledgeable Beth Ann Locke site: http://fundraiserbeth.com! Thanks again Steven!!!

  2. Diane Korb December 17, 2014 at 11:53 am - Reply

    Great list, thank you! Here’s another blog I absolutely love – http://fearless-fundraising.com/.

  3. Monica Kramer December 17, 2014 at 12:29 pm - Reply

    Thank you all for this wonderful information. While trying to raise funds for my son’s small Montessori school (PreK – K), most of the time it is difficult to figure out whom our parent group should contact for sponsorship and/or donations outside the circle of the parents and extended families. I’m looking forward to checking out these blogs for inspiration. Merry Christmas and may you all have a very healthy and prosperous 2015.

  4. Joanne Fritz December 17, 2014 at 1:29 pm - Reply

    Thanks so much for this list! I follow most and will happily add the others. Thanks so much for including me on it too. Honored!

  5. Vanessa Chase December 17, 2014 at 1:30 pm - Reply

    Steven – I am so honored and humbled to be including on such an amazing list of writer, thought leaders and practitioners. Thank you so much!

  6. claire axelrad December 17, 2014 at 2:45 pm - Reply

    Thanks so much for including Clairification on this amazing list you’ve put together. I’m honored. And I hope folks will check out my weekly blog posts with practical advice gleaned from my 30+ years in the trenches (as well as the weekly round-ups, of course). 🙂

    I follow almost all of these, but there are definitely a few new ones for me to check out. And I’d like to add The Veritus Group — Richard Perry and Jeff Schreifels take a deep dive into major gifts fundraising. It’s beyond excellent.

  7. Paul de Gregorio December 17, 2014 at 3:14 pm - Reply

    What a great list.

  8. Richard Freedlund December 17, 2014 at 5:01 pm - Reply

    Great list, indeed. Proud to say that I know and follow most of them. One blogger that I noticed missing from the list is Michael Rosen, whose blog michaelrosensays.wordpress.com, has been a great influence on me.

    • Steven Shattuck
      Steven Shattuck December 17, 2014 at 5:09 pm - Reply

      Michael is great! Should have made it a list of 50…

    • Michael J. Rosen, CFRE December 22, 2014 at 4:37 pm - Reply

      Richard, I appreciate the shout-out. Thank you! I’m honored to know that my blog (http://MichaelRosenSays.wordpress.com) is of value to you.

      Steven, thank you for the kind words. And thank you for compiling the list. I already follow many of the blogs you recommended. However, some are new to me, so I’ll definitely look forward to checking them out.

      • claire axelrad December 22, 2014 at 4:54 pm - Reply

        Love all the great additions (feel bad I didn’t add some of them myself — I read them!). It really is remarkable how much great talent and wisdom there is in our sector, and so much generosity as well. It makes me very proud and gives me a nice, warm fuzzy feeling. I wish that feeling to all of you as well (you deserve it!), and may you enjoy a very happy and healthy holiday and new year — and beyond!.

        And thanks so much for the shout-out Brooke!

  9. Beth Ann Locke December 17, 2014 at 5:08 pm - Reply

    Great list! And thanks for the PS! There ARE so many great blogs… I love your list and secretly love that Agents of Good is up top… The best thing is all the sharing that goes on in our generous sector! Thanks, Steven!

  10. Terri Harel December 17, 2014 at 6:28 pm - Reply

    Great list – it’s amazing how many wonderful resources are out there for nonprofits. As the editor, I wanted to chime in here with the Classy blog – http://www.classy.org/blog/ Always aiming to empower nonprofit professionals to grow and succeed – from donor stewardship, branding and design, to CRM management / Salesforce, to peer-to-peer fundraising and far beyond.

    I can’t wait to dig into these and add them to my Feedly…and they’ll make for great reading over Christmas. Thanks!

    Cheers.

  11. Mary Cahalane December 17, 2014 at 9:01 pm - Reply

    So tickled to be on this list with so many people I look up to. And yes, great additions in the comments, too. (Add my friend LisaSargent.com, too!)

    But I think Beth really hit the nail on the head – the best thing of all is this great community. Via our blogs, our tweets, our posts and emails… we all connect and share and help each other do the best possible work. The generosity we look for in our donors is on display every day with each other. It’s quite amazing. Thank you for being such an important part of that!

  12. Erica Waasdorp December 18, 2014 at 7:35 am - Reply

    I’m absolutely thrilled my blog is on the list and among so many wonderful fundraisers…
    thank you and wishing every single one of you a terrific holiday and an even more ‘blogful’ 2015!
    cheers, Erica

  13. Farra Trompeter December 18, 2014 at 7:38 am - Reply

    Steven,

    Thanks for including Big Duck on this wonderful list. I can only assume you saved the best for last. 🙂

    One clarification–Sarah Durham is the brilliant one who assembled our team. She started Big Duck in 1994. I have had the pleasure of working with her and the rest of the Ducks for the past 8 years. Not to mention the joy of working with some fabulous people like the ones on this list and some awesome nonprofiteers.

    Happy holidays and successful year-end fundraising seasons to all!

    Farra

  14. John December 18, 2014 at 8:12 am - Reply

    Thanks so much for the mention! The Agitator and Gail Perry are my favs!

  15. Sarah Durham December 18, 2014 at 8:41 am - Reply

    Thanks, Steven, for including Big Duck on this list! It’s a terrific compilation. Well done.

  16. Brooke Battle December 18, 2014 at 10:46 am - Reply

    Great list — I regularly pass along John Haydon, Clairification and npengage to our nonprofit clients and will use this list as a go-to! It’s exciting to be part of such a dynamic time in nonprofit fundraising.

  17. Scott Paley December 18, 2014 at 7:44 pm - Reply

    How about Joan Garry? http://joangarry.com

    • Steven Shattuck
      Steven Shattuck December 19, 2014 at 9:10 am - Reply

      Thanks, Scott! I didn’t know Joan before but now I do!

      • Scott Paley December 19, 2014 at 9:14 am - Reply

        My pleasure. Joan is super awesome. She was the E.D. at GLAAD for like 10 years so has tremendous hands-on experience. Now she consults.

        Her blog is a serious resource for any nonprofit leader (staff and board) and there is a significant section on fundraising. The last post on avoiding fundraiser burnout this time of year is especially timely.

        http://www.joangarry.com/avoid-fundraiser-burnout/

  18. Erik Anderson December 18, 2014 at 10:52 pm - Reply

    As I said on Twitter this morning, I am over the moon about being named to your Top 40 list. With the void left by Casey Kasum’s death earlier this year, your Top 40 list might get some traction in 2015.

    Again, I’m humbled and thankful for your endorsement! 🙂

    Happy New Year from DonorDreams blog.

  19. Dennis Fischman December 19, 2014 at 8:54 am - Reply

    I’m honored to be on this list. So many of the nonprofit bloggers I respect the most are included! I want to recommend Ann Green’s Nonprofit Blog, http://anngreennonprofit.com/. She’s good on so many topics that touch on communications and fundraising, but especially on how to make thanking your donors a part of your calendar.

  20. Ann Green December 19, 2014 at 10:28 am - Reply

    Thank you so much Dennis and Steven! Happy Holidays!

  21. Steven Shattuck
    Steven Shattuck December 19, 2014 at 10:34 am - Reply
  22. Chris Hughes December 30, 2014 at 11:36 am - Reply

    RuffaloCODY’s fundraising blog is fairly new to the scene, but we are posting regularly on topics related to all areas of fundraising across multiple channels.

    Our blog can be found at http://www.ruffalocody.com/category/fm-blog while a full array of resources (including white papers our staff has published) can be found at http://www.ruffalocody.com/fundraising.

  23. Clark December 11, 2015 at 11:19 pm - Reply

    Late response, but… just wondered if anyone has an OPML file to make subscribing easier… Thanks!

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