Are you stuck with the task of making your annual report again?

Are you afraid no one is going to read it, AGAIN?

Your nonprofit annual report doesn’t have to be boring! It can be fun! It can be useful and engaging! It can make your donors want to give more!

When I first started making annual reports, I was an intern for Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and I had NO idea what I was doing. Luckily, in the years since then I’ve learned a few things about what makes a good annual report- from the typefaces to the pictures, from the stories to the donor features, and now I want to share what I’ve learned with you.

This year I’m teaching a June annual report masterclass and we’re going to talk about how to make a better annual report for 2017.

Why should you care about designing a better annual report?

Because a good annual report can lead to your donors trusting you more, and giving you more donations.

Don’t believe me? Leslie Clay, Chief Development Officer of Hope Cottage in Dallas wrote me this email in March 2017.

“I took your annual report masterclass last year, and this year we got a big donation as a direct result of our 2016 annual report!

We got a nice donation from a workplace giving donor who has been giving to us for the last two years, via United Way.  He received our annual report and he called to let us know that after reading the report, he felt compelled to donate more. He also told us they planned on attending our upcoming walk in June.

One for the win column!  Thanks for all your tutelage.”  -Leslie Clay | Chief Development Officer | Hope Cottage | Dallas, Texas


Do you want to learn more about how to make an annual report that works for fundraising? Check out some popular posts from the archives!


Before and after: What makes a good annual report cover

Here’s where I show you what my first bad annual report cover looked like-and how I improved my second one. Who I used as inspiration-and what subtle thing your donors notice-that you’d never expect.


What an annual report review looks like

Each student in my Annual Reports Masterclass will get a personalized critique from me, worth $500, that can pinpoint the weak spots in your annual report, just like I do here. Check out how this nonprofit could have improved their annual report- And see what you can do better with yours!


INTERVIEW: This annual report helped them raise almost half a million dollars with their appeal letter

I interviewed a development director in Ohio who works at a YWCA chapter. She used their annual report to report on their results, and then followed up with an appeal that raised TONS of money, more than most nonprofits make in a year. How did she do it? Read on and find out. We show exactly how you can reproduce her success in the Annual Report Masterclass.


What makes a good annual report letter from a director?

My first letter from a director was so bad. We didn’t have a lot of room. I didn’t know what to write. All of these are excuses. I could have looked up good examples of what to write- but it was so hard, I was under a deadline and I had 10 other tasks on my plate. So I just came up with a couple of sentences, showed them to the board chair, got his okay, and called it good. Here’s what you can do instead, that’s better!



Please, think of the kittens!

How NOT to create an annual report

A Tongue in cheek look at all of the most common annual report mistakes-with-(Sigh) examples! Just remember, every time you use comic sans or Papyrus, god kills a kitten! Please, think of the kittens!


Join us for our June Annual Report Masterclass!

In three days you will learn how to make an annual report that works to make donors trust you more, and make them want to keep giving to your nonprofit. We’ll cover everything from the design to the stories, from the letter to the director to how to highlight your supporters, and more!


What are people saying about this masterclass series?

“That was a wonderful presentation, extremely valuable. As a first time annual report maker I learned so many tips to keep in mind while making this first one and ideas for the future. Mazarine explained the material clearly and very well organized. The information about the donor portion of the annual report is something I will definitely take away. My organization has not included anything but lists of donors but the presentation made me realize the importance of adding the donor experience.” –Laura Staley, DePaul Treatment Centers, Portland, Oregon

“Mazarine was very helpful and this presentation was extremely valuable. I enjoyed that she used some of her own projects to explain the good and the bad. I learned some of the key items to include in the annual report, as well as those items that we tend to think should be included, but really just take up valuable space. ” –Leni Corbett, Jesuit Academy, Omaha, NE

“She was great. I found this presentation extremely valuable and I would recommend it to others. Very informative. Can’t wait to pass information along to my boss.” –Phillip Bloch, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry

“Mazarine Treyz was clear, concise, enthusiastic and approachable. I learned a lot about how important planning is, not just doing your reports like they`ve always been done. Establishing standards. Rethinking what you want to get across. And displaying things visually that are more engaging and diverting!” I found her presentation extremely useful and would highly recommend this presentation to others. -Jessica Perkins, Canada

“Mazarine did an excellent job of communicating the right way, and the wrong way, of doing things. I loved that she used concrete examples for readability. I learned the importance of compiling information throughout the year so as not to get caught at the deadline. And I loved her tips for using report as a fundraising tool, as well as her tangible suggestions for resources. Well done.Barth Gillan, Zeta Psi Fraternity of North America, Montreal, Canada

>> Learn more about this annual report masterclass here