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The power of ‘no’

noTo fundraisers, hearing the word ‘no’ can be a little jarring. Sometimes even a little awkward.

As a direct marketer, it’s never bothered me so much. In many ways, crassly it’s a numbers game. For me, ‘no’ simply means, “there’s nothing to see here”.

And on I move. Looking for more and better ways to find people who say ‘yes’.

Until recently. (more…)

Fundraisers need to ask themselves why, at least five times each day

Why?

It is 22 years since Ken Burnett published the seminal book “Relationship Fundraising”.  Everyone claims to have read it.  Most people now call themselves a relationship fundraiser, yet almost no-one is actually implementing the core ideas in Ken’s book.  Why?

Professor Adrian Sargeant has proved beyond doubt that relationship fundraising increases lifetime value.  Yet few of us could say how much we are spending on retaining donors.  Why? (more…)

Everything that is wrong with our retention programmes and how to put them right

Is anyone’s loyalty programme actually working (and, just to clarify, I’m using the more traditional definition of ‘working’ as you used to lose loads of donors but now you don’t)?

I’ve never met anyone (who wasn’t selling such a programme) who could answer ‘yes’. But that doesn’t stop us squandering enormous amounts of time, energy and money on an entirely unproven ‘best’ practise that’s making things worse. I know several fundraising directors who know for sure retention got worse after they introduced their loyalty programmes. But they continue to run them. It would be funny if it wasn’t tragic. untitled (more…)