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Fundraising Detective
Helping you solve your fundraising problems
Recent Activity
Sometimes the slog becomes overwhelming for fundraisers. Meetings, negativity, bureaucracy and battling silos can be too much, even for the best of us. That’s why last week’s webinar with Emily Petty had such a focus on reflection, growth well-being and re-energising. Missed it? Don’t worry – you can watch a recording here. This week I’ll be talking to Lianne Howard-Dace who explains the process she used to help tackle the slog and internal battle to make changes to a historic fundraising campaign in decline. The reward? A breakthrough that resulted in a better supporter experience, improved internal working and, most... Continue reading
Posted Jul 29, 2019 at Fundraising Detective
Click here to register for the free webinar on Wednesday 24 July. There is no doubt that fundraiser’s want to improve supporter experience, deliver engagement and raise more long-term income. Everyone is talking about it, but so few (if any) charities have actually cracked it. There are some excellent products, services and solutions available to fundraisers. Yet, I hear of so many engagement initiatives failing or stalling before they’ve even began. Why is this the case? I’ll be sharing some thoughts in the coming weeks, but at the top of the list is the failure to build the right culture... Continue reading
Posted Jul 15, 2019 at Fundraising Detective
Image from: Over the last year I’ve talked to many charities and fundraisers who are ambitious about improving their supporter experience. They’ve got the desire and intent to move to a new fundraising model based on engagement, but it is proving hard to do. I hear the following problems coming up time and time again: · How do I influence colleagues and show them the benefits of integrated journeys and working? · Everyone in my charity is so busy – where can I start and include them in a way that doesn’t stop them doing the day job? ·... Continue reading
Posted Jul 11, 2019 at Fundraising Detective
This is a 'hello' and sort of 'goodbye' post! In January, I joined DonorVoice full-time as their MD for Europe*. It means I'll have even less time than last year to share thoughts on this blog. However, it does mean I'll get the opportunity to post over on the Agitator, which I'm hoping to do sometime in March. As part of this new role, I'm currently in the midst of working on a new report on supporter journeys. I'd be delighted to send you a copy of what my colleagues have pulled together. There's some interesting ideas and concepts that... Continue reading
Posted Feb 22, 2019 at Fundraising Detective
It's time for another round-up of articles that caught my eye in May - with apologies for any great content in March and April that I missed. Anyone interested in legacy fundraising should read the new Legacy Voice review 'Everything we know about legacy fundraising 2018'. Authored by Adrian Sargeant and Claire Routley, it is packed full of insight and ideas. The Justgiving blog has some great examples of small charities 'smashing it' at digital. The latest Rogare report is on an important subject. How ought beneficiary stories be told? This is the first in a series of six and... Continue reading
Posted Jun 5, 2018 at Fundraising Detective
I'm delighted to announce that I'm launching the UK's first Individual Giving Mastery course. Working in partnership with Rob Woods from Bright Spot Fundraising, we'll be taking the winning formula from his major donor and corporate courses and applying it to individual giving. This is the course I wish I'd done when I was first head of individual giving and it comes with a money-back guarantee. The waiting list is now open and you can find out more on this information page. If it's not suitable for you, then I'd be grateful if you could pass on the info on... Continue reading
Posted Mar 12, 2018 at Fundraising Detective
I’ve noticed a trend in email subject lines over the last 12-18 months. Many start with ‘Re:’ or ‘Fwd’ to try and get you to believe the e-mail is part of an on-going conversation or a personal communication. I fell for this every time in the early days, but I’m becoming increasingly immune to the technique. I now tend to think less of any charity or company that overuses this in their subject lines. I don't like being tricked. Similarly, I’ve seen one organisation (I’ll keep them anonymous for now, but a prize if anyone can guess!) who almost without... Continue reading
Posted Feb 15, 2018 at Fundraising Detective
I had the pleasure of attending SOFII's 'I wish I'd thought of that' event last week. It is always a fantastic afternoon. Great speakers. Amazing case studies. Fantastically organised (well done Open Creates). Plenty of emotion and a few laughs too. Do check out the videos when they are on the SOFII website. In the meantime, you can read about one of the ideas from last week. In my view it is one of the best executed direct marketing campaigns in the UK - Crisis at Christmas. The start of the year always brings lots of great content that reflects... Continue reading
Posted Jan 25, 2018 at Fundraising Detective
At 13.00 UK today, I’m going to be interviewed on Facebook Live by Ravinol Chambers of Be Inspired Films. This is the third edition of the Institute of Fundraising’s #FRED talks and I’ll be talking about why relationship fundraising is more important than ever. Do tune in and ask any questions you might have! To whet your appetite, here is a short edited extract from Donors for Life: A practitioner’s guide to relationship fundraising, that looks at some of the major criticisms of relationship fundraising. Three major criticisms of relationship fundraising – and why they’re wrong… Not everyone wants a... Continue reading
Posted Dec 12, 2017 at Fundraising Detective
Well, after a nearly a year off blogging I thought it was time to get back to it! 2017 has been an amazing year and the lack of blogging has been due to two reasons. Most excitedly, September saw the publication of my first fundraising book, Donors for Life - A Practitioner's Guide to Relationship Fundraising. Co-authored with Paul Stein and with a foreword from Ken Burnett, it aims to give fundraisers ideas, tip and practical advice on how to implement relationship fundraising and improve the supporter experience. It has had rave reviews from the likes of Roger Craver at... Continue reading
Posted Dec 5, 2017 at Fundraising Detective
As the year draws to an end, I wanted to share one final reading round-up for you to enjoy. Before starting though, I have three announcements to share: What was your favourite fundraising campaign/appeal of 2016? Please comment with your suggestions or drop me an e-mail at [email protected] - I want to write an article for SOFII featuring the best appeals from around the world. The 2017 Scottish Fundraising Conference has a call for papers out. I've heard great feedback about this conference and the organising committee have big plans for 2017. My wife and I are currently crowdfunding for... Continue reading
Posted Dec 30, 2016 at Fundraising Detective
December is looming and time to share another reading round-up. Thanks for reading. Richard Turner attended the recent Justgiving awards and shares some of his favourite stories from the fundraising award winners. On 101 Fundraising, Matthew Sherrington reports on the recent survey in Fundraising magazine's Men and Women survey. The comments are also well worth a read. Lizzie Hollis' reflections on the survey are also worth a read. I've just bought Alex Ferguson's book on leadership (it was 99p on Kindle!), so was interested to read this article on the book and the idea of 'zooming out to lead' on... Continue reading
Posted Nov 27, 2016 at Fundraising Detective
Time for another reading round-up. Hope you enjoy the fine selection of articles below. If any of you are going to the IFC then I hope to see you there! In the meantime, happy fundraising... Rogare have been busy in the last month or so and their recent paper on ethical decision making in fundraising is worth a read. You can also check out commentary from the Agitator and thoughts on integrity from Ken Burnett. Also, Ian McQuillin published this two part blog asking if being a donor the same thing as being a consumer and then looking at the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 4, 2016 at Fundraising Detective
At the recent IoF National Fundraising Convention a couple of people asked me 'where's the round-up gone?' The quick answer is time has beaten me, but I've resolved to get back to blogging at least monthly to the end of the year. This round-up will share the best of the convention and a couple of other things that have caught my eye this month. Thanks for reading and enjoy! Institute of Fundraising National Convention Round-Up I had a great three days at this year's convention and loved the Barbican at the new venue. I've collected some of the stories and... Continue reading
Posted Jul 31, 2016 at Fundraising Detective
Thanks for letting me know Jeremy. Have now updated the post.
1 reply
Apologies for the mistake. Have now amended the post to the correct name.
1 reply
I have the pleasure of hosting May's carnival and I chose the topic of 'leadership in fundraising'. I believe poor leadership is one of the biggest threats to our profession, so I was interested to see what stories and posts I would receive. I've been fortunate to work for some great leaders in my career. One of the most vivid lessons I was taught early in my career is neatly summed up in this Gaping Void image and associated post: Probably my favourite submission this month comes from Beth Ann Locke. She shares why her first non-profit boss was so... Continue reading
Posted Jun 6, 2016 at Fundraising Detective
I’m delighted to be hosting May’s Nonprofit Blog Carnival. With the presidential primaries well underway and the UK about to vote in the biggest referendum in a generation, leadership is a hot topic at the moment. I have been reading and thinking about the subject a lot recently and thought it would make for a great carnival topic. I strongly believe there is a leadership deficit in fundraising. The evidence of this? High staff turnover at nonprofits, a focus on short-term planning and results and a dearth of strategic thinking. Of course, there are brights spots and exceptions to this,... Continue reading
Posted Apr 28, 2016 at Fundraising Detective
Don't worry, I'm still alive! It's been a long time since my last round-up. I've decided to only include items from March onwards, so apologies for people who shared great content in February. Enjoy and fingers crossed I'll be back early May! Regulation and the proposed fundraising preference service (FPS) are still big topics of discussion. Here are a collection Jackie Fowler and Ken Burnett with a case study on Botton Village. They've been using FPS since 1986! Marg from the Fundraising Collective explains why the proposed service makes her head hurt. Giles Pegram looks at the relationship between fundraisers... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2016 at Fundraising Detective
Hi James, a belated thanks for the comment. I'd love to know more about the work you've done at VSO and possibly doing a case study on your results if interested? Cheers for reading, Craig
1 reply
I wanted to share this article I recently wrote for the Rogare Critical Fundraising blog. These are my reflections on the recent review undertaken by Rogare. The original post has some interesting comments and, if you have any thoughts, I suggest you add them to the Rogare blog. I'd also recommend reading Ken Burnett's recent blog on the subject. Thanks for reading. Rogare’s recent review of Relationship Fundraising gives much food for thought for the sector. Importantly, it suggests topics for further exploration to help improve the standards of fundraising and raising more money for the causes we care about.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 17, 2016 at Fundraising Detective
It's been a busy start of the year, so this round up is long overdue! I've focused on posts from January and hope you find something of interest. Thanks for reading. I want to start with the review of relationship fundraising review by Adrian Sargeant, Jen Shang and Ian MacQuillin of fundraising think tank Rogare. You can download the four volumes from the project sponsor Pursuant . You can also read a summary of the key findings on the Rogare blog. I'll be blogging my thoughts on the review soon. In summary, I think there are some interesting insights for... Continue reading
Posted Feb 7, 2016 at Fundraising Detective
This weekend has seen another round of charity and fundraising bashing from the national press in the UK. That’s why this week’s Monday Morning Memo from Roy H. Williams (the Wizard of Ads) was such a welcome read this lunchtime. As the wizard himself explains… Branding – as it is taught today – will at best cause people to remember you and have a mild opinion. But unlike yesterday’s branding, today’s bonding is the beginning of relationship, the essence of loyalty and the foundation of community among human beings. Bonding, when done properly, makes people feel connected to you. It... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2015 at Fundraising Detective
As Christmas and the New Year approach it is fair to say it has been a tough for UK fundraisers. Will 2015 be remembered as an annus horribilis and the mark of a decline in fundraising or as a watershed moment for our profession and a renaissance in how we raise funds? Time will tell, but we'll begin this time with further opinion on the new fundraising regulator in the UK and the proposed fundraising preference service. Like many fundraisers, I have been disappointed with the response of the Institute of Fundraising to the proposed regulation. It was good to... Continue reading
Posted Dec 5, 2015 at Fundraising Detective
I was delighted to receive a copy of Lucy Gower’s new book the innovation workout. I’ve known Lucy for a number of years and in my previous role she ran a training session on innovation for my team. Therefore I was looking forward to reading the book and seeing Lucy’s expertise in written form. Fortunately the book lived up to the high standards I expected. Here is my full review, along with a special offer from Lucy at the end of the article. Book review: the innovation workout Innovation is an over-used and often misunderstood concept within charities and fundraising... Continue reading
Posted Nov 8, 2015 at Fundraising Detective