QUALITY. CREATIVITY. STYLE.
QUALITY. CREATIVITY. STYLE.
Molly Shapiro has more than 20 years of experience writing and editing for some of America’s top companies, nonprofits and publications, including Microsoft, Intel, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. She works with organizations large and small, helping them identify and achieve their marketing and communications goals.
Molly began her career in Rome, where she wrote about the Italian film industry for Variety magazine. In New York City, she worked as a screenwriter at Vanguard Films before moving to the West Coast to write for high-tech giants Intel and Microsoft. Now based in her native Kansas City, she works for nonprofit organizations, corporations and small businesses, advertising and public relations agencies, and consulting firms. She also provides writing and editing support for business and how-to books, novels, and memoirs. Molly is the author of two works of fiction: "Eternal City," winner of the Willa Cather Fiction Prize, and "Point, Click, Love," published by Ballantine in 2011. She earned her B.A. in semiotics from Brown University and her M.F.A. in creative writing from Columbia University.
Marketing isn’t just about brochures. It’s about informative fact sheets, interactive annual reports, slick PowerPoints and colorful case studies. I work with companies and organizations to develop marketing collateral that will help them sell their product, service or point of view to receptive and reluctant audiences alike.
Top-quality communications—from newsletters to press releases to emails—require rigor and resourcefulness. Rigor to make sure every single missive is on message and held to the highest standard, resourcefulness to find ingenious ways to make those missives heard. I use my storytelling skills to capture people’s attention and drive the point home.
Being clear and succinct is important for all types of writing, but it’s essential online. My extensive experience writing for the Web gives my clients a leg up as they fight for people’s ever-shrinking attention span. And with new digital platforms cropping up every day, I help clients navigate the world of social media to reach their audiences with compelling content.
Getting people to part with their money is no easy task. Sometimes it requires a steady stream of facts and figures. Sometimes it requires an emotional appeal to the heart. I work to grab readers’ attention from the very first sentence of a fundraising email, so they’re ready to click on the “Give Now” button before they even reach the end.
For many nonprofits, grants are how they stay in business. Successful grant writing requires clarity, meticulousness and a certain amount of passion. I’ve helped organizations such as Jewish Family Services, Johnson County Community College and the Kansas City Symphony tell their unique stories so they can secure the funds they need to continue their important missions.
My creative writing adds depth, intelligence and sometimes humor to my corporate and nonprofit work. It helps me grow as a writer and hone my storytelling skills, making me better equipped to communicate the critical messages my clients wish to convey. And as a published author, I help individuals who are trying to make their own mark in the book industry.
From grants and short articles to full-length books involving intensive research and interviews, Molly's writing is not only clean and precise but compelling. Like a good novel, you can't put it down. You want to read more.
TRUDI GALBLUM, Trudi Galblum Communications
Molly is a star—a magnificent writer who can articulate our vision and mission in a way that draws people in and magnifies our key messages. She has a real gift for weaving the threads of a story and telling it in a powerful and compelling way. Molly is such a pleasure to work with—my first choice when it comes to writers!
AMY GIPSON, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Since 2003, I’ve had the opportunity to work with almost every program of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, including Global Health; Agricultural Development; Education; and Water, Sanitation & Hygiene. For Global Libraries, I was asked to conduct site visits of the winners of the annual Access to Learning Award, which recognizes organizations working to increase digital inclusion. During the summers of 2010, 2011 and 2012, I traveled to Greece, Kenya and the Dominican Republic, then produced a variety of materials showcasing the winners, including slideshow scripts, press releases, trip reports, speeches and online profiles.
For Anne Lewis Strategies, a digital marketing firm, I wrote hundreds of online appeals on behalf of elected officials, political candidates and nonprofit organizations to help them raise money, gather grassroots supporters and achieve their policy goals. Sometimes, I helped them shatter their fundraising records. I ghostwrote for Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Al Franken, activists Bonnie Raitt and Erin Brockovich, and many others. I also raised money for organizations such as the National Parks Conservation Association, Environmental Working Group, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and the National Stroke Association.
I’ve written for several organizations that work to bring financial services to people in developing countries living on as little as $2 a day. For the United Nations Capital Development Fund’s Better Than Cash Alliance, I wrote an article discussing how the Kenyan government is helping the Philippines government implement an e-payment system. For the Boulder Institute of Microfinance, I traveled to the Symposium on Financial Inclusion in Turin, Italy to interview participants and speakers. And for the Gates Foundation’s Financial Services for the Poor initiative, I wrote white papers, press releases, interviews and articles for the first-ever Global Savings Forum in Seattle.
All companies and nonprofits have a story to tell. Case studies are an excellent way for organizations to introduce people to what they do and highlight their successes. Service Management Group (SMG), a leading customer experience research firm that typically works with multinational corporations, wanted to describe its pro-bono work for the Kansas City Zoo. I interviewed the director of the zoo, the board chair and several SMG employees, then wrote a piece that tells how SMG used it’s innovative research techniques to help the struggling zoo make the improvements necessary to attract more visitors and get back into the black.
Writing a book-length history of a company, organization, family or individual is a challenging but deeply rewarding experience. It requires intensive interviews over many hours, sometimes with as many as 20 to 30 different people. Working with Trudi Galblum Communications, I wrote a corporate history of Health Midwest, a major player in the Kansas City health care market in the 1990s, and a history of Menorah Medical Center, founded in 1931 as the first Jewish hospital in Kansas City. Together we also wrote several histories of prominent Kansas City families and individuals.
ROBERT WOOD JOHNSON FOUNDATION
In its mission to “improve the health and health care of all Americans,” the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has been a leader in advocating for increased access to high-quality, affordable health care. Working with GMMB, a public relations firm based in Washington, D.C., I wrote a weekly summary of the major news and feature stories addressing the issues of universal health care and the problem of the uninsured. For seven years, I worked on many aspects of the foundation’s overarching Cover the Uninsured campaign, which began in 2003 and culminated in the passage of the Affordable Care Act in March 2010.
Each year, the United Way of Greater Kansas City conducts an intensive campaign to raise money for the various community service programs it supports. In 2005, the organization worked with The Kansas City Star to publish a series of article-length advertisements to illustrate the impact the United Way and its grantees have had on the city. I wrote all eight of the advertisements, which were published over a four-month period, based on interviews with program directors, beneficiaries and United Way employees.
POINT CLICK LOVE
“Point, Click, Love,” a novel about love and relationships in the digital age, was published by Ballantine, a division of Random House, in December 2011 and earned a spot on Target’s “Emerging Authors” shelf. Author Tom Perrotta called it “A thoroughly engaging debut novel…Molly Shapiro writes with wit, insight and a light touch.” It was published in German and Hungarian, and was optioned for the screen by Tollin Productions. My book of short stories, “Eternal City,” was the winner of the 1997 Willa Cather Fiction Prize. The Kansas City Star called it “a sophisticated, polished, taut, cool, funny and sometimes quietly scary collection of stories… a virtuoso performance.”