What can we learn from Universities about Philanthropy?
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
2M ago
As I’ve said before, one of the great pleasures of consultancy is the variety of the projects we get to do. In the last year we have been working more with Higher Education organisations than in previous years.  It’s a fascinating world and there are definitely learnings for the wider charity sector. HE philanthropy is very different from charity fundraising. In some ways they can be seen as mirror images of each other. What HE really excels at is major giving. We have been working with a University in Australia that raises 97% of its over $100m annual philanthropic income from gifts of ..read more
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Can Face-Face Fundraising Build Your Brand?
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
11M ago
We were very fortunate to be at the very first international Face-to-Face Fundraising conference in Vienna last month. I mean Vienna in June with added fundraising, what’s not to like? I have been a strong proponent of Face-to-Face since running my first campaigns in the early bronze age around 1997. Face-to-Face was the primary reason that regular giving in the UK doubled in the period to 2010 and it has recruited tens of millions of supporters for non-profits in nearly 100 countries around to world to date. But the approach has always been controversial, most of all within the non ..read more
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A Change in Mindset
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
1y ago
In 2022 we experienced the first (nearly) year of post-pandemic fundraising. If anyone was hoping for a return to ‘normal’ they must have been sorely disappointed. We went straight from the Black Death to a major war in Europe, which was swiftly accompanied by rampant inflation and a cost-of-living crisis. Oh, and the planet’s on fire. It all makes us in our jobs as fundraisers look rather small and insignificant. But the fact is there is more need of us than ever as pressure on non-profits to respond to the multiple crises continues to increase. And in 2022 fundraisers were severely tested t ..read more
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Is this the future of Child Sponsorship?
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
1y ago
I’ve spent a lot of my career working on individual giving programmes and in particular focusing on regular giving.  The late 1990s and early 2000s was the heyday of regular giving in the UK and the model of mass recruitment of monthly donors primarily through face to face has spread across the fundraising world.  But the world has got a lot more complicated since then. When I started in fundraising, the gold standard for a regular giving product was Child Sponsorship.  The charities with child sponsorship programmes had the highest value supporters with the best retention of a ..read more
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The CRM Dilemma
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
2y ago
  One of the real joys of being a strategic consultant is the variety of clients you work with. In the past year or so, we’ve worked with organisations from across the UK and Ireland and countries as varied as the US, Bangladesh, Egypt and Uruguay. We’ve worked with non-profits of pretty much every description and cause area from local and regional charities to massive UN organisations. The projects we’ve done have been incredibly varied, including market entry studies, auditing and reviewing fundraising and marketing functions, developing major appeals and campaigns, creating ..read more
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Fundraising Responses to Ukraine
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
2y ago
We’ve been having lots of calls with people since the start of the war in Ukraine as our humanitarian friends and clients formulate their responses to the crisis. With no end in sight to the conflict, there’s no doubt we are looking at a vast humanitarian emergency for a considerable time to come.  Our jobs of course are to help mobilise the resources to fund this. All the evidence is that there is vast outpouring of support from people and organisations all over the world for the people of Ukraine.  This can sit uneasily with those of us who are very conscious of the crises that ha ..read more
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Leadership after the Crisis
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
2y ago
I don’t know about you but 2021 for me was just a long slog. After the constant crisis that was 2020, this year has been less of an emergency but has consisted of a seemingly endless series of challenges as organisations adjust to a Covid world. And 2022 looks like starting the same way. This is all… quite tiring really. We see this fatigue across very many of our clients. While the charities we work with have, for the most part, had a reasonable year in 2021 (fundraising results have held up fairly well if not hitting the peaks that were achieved at points in 2020), it has felt like really h ..read more
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Where will we find our new donors?
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
2y ago
One of the changes in fundraising we’ve noticed since the pandemic is that there is increased focus from many charities on developing their individual giving programmes. Whether it’s existing programmes that have been struggling in recent years (often since 2015 and Olive Cook) or charities seeking to develop individual giving from scratch , there is definitely increased interest and investment in this area.  And lots of very busy fundraisers, agencies and consultants. Of course any successful individual giving programme has to be built on a proper understanding of the audiences being re ..read more
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Now We Are 5
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
2y ago
It has been 5 years since Imogen Ward and I created the company now known (after Mark Astarita joined in 2017) as AAW. It has been quite a ride. September 2016 feels like a different world now. Our idea, when we set up AAW, was that there was a space for an agency that combined strategy consulting for charities with finding the people who will implement those strategies. This was something of a leap of faith at the time but the logic of combining strategy with people consulting has looked increasingly compelling over time. Our view in 2016 was that fundraising as had been practised over the p ..read more
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The New World of Fundraising
Fundraising Fundamentals
by Tobin Aldrich
3y ago
Over a year into the Covid crisis the future that all of us face is still very uncertain. What do we know about the long term implications of the pandemic on the non-profit sector and for fundraising specifically? There is much we don’t know – how long the crisis will last and what condition our societies will be at the end of it is just the beginning of our ignorance. All we can do is to look at what has happened so far and try to identify what look like trends that might last. All world economies have taken huge damage and government debt has reached unprecedented levels. What that means lo ..read more
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