5 Takeaways from the Fundraising Convention 2016

The Institute of Fundraising’s annual Fundraising Convention has now come to a close. Here are five things about the convention that really resonated with IFC CEO, John Baguley during the three days.

1. It’s not what you do or how you do it that counts it is why you do it. This insight comes from a great talk by Carla Miller who was quoting a Simon Sinek the author of “Start from Why”. It comes back to the real reason we all give and that is because our emotions are engaged. Then we justify our intentions with logic probably based on what and how. This gives an echo of the reasons people buy luxury brands.

2. Talking of which, Natalie Maher of the ‘We Are Good’ brand and digital engagement design agency says charities should perhaps give their major donors the same great feeling they get from their favourite luxury brands which is more a warm glow than any direct reward. They are not in the game for that, but they do like doing immediate good and find root causes difficult. And as perhaps we knew they often give because someone in their family really understand the problem perhaps by being a sufferer.

3. Digital engagement and especially crowdfunding is growing even faster than we expected, especially for Ann Marie Huby CEO Just Giving. The real marketing device of any charity is its existing supporters and charities can, through social media, harness their huge selling power. JustGiving has invested heavily in analysing the huge amount of data they have amassed and it is impressive stuff. Did you know that the funds that come from people’s sponsors are often far higher over time than the donations that come from supporters coming from other recruitment methods. Their new crowdfunding programme is expanding far faster than anything else they have done and this perhaps confirms the huge trend toward online giving that is snowballing faster and faster. Especially when asks can be linked in this way to current problems in the news media and tacked in discrete chunks.

4. The IoF’s choice of the Barbican really paid off with more attendees than ever before and a much better servicing of fundraisers, despite the Barbican’s inherent lack of signing and confusing layout. Good to see IoFs own signs up or I would have been lost a couple of times.

5. Weren’t the new red volunteers t-shirts great!!!! Yes, that was the International Fundraising Consultancy sponsoring them, and using its let’s talk slogan to encourage people to engage with Bill King, Director IFC UK on Bill.king@groupifc.com.