Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Great fundraising ideas

Following an inspirational and useful IFC (a fundraising conference) I am now camped up in sunny London before my return to Sydney next week. Whilst here I have had some really great meetings with charity folk and some friends who have just opened up a new UK agency, Open Fundraising.

I have known these guys for quite some time, since they were with bluefrog, another London based agency who I worked with when I was 'charity-side'. bluefrog are well renowned for their innovation and great creative approaches, and thinking about them - and the current economic stuff made me think more about good ideas and where they come from.

My friend Ken Burnett emailed me today about the fact that in times like this, ideas are more important than ever.

"Many currently established methods of donor acquisition can be seen to have arisen as innovations when the need was greatest.

See ActionAid’s insert story on SOFII, and Greenpeace’s development of face-to-face. Plus an array of legacy marketing and other initiatives that arose directly out of fundraising uncertainty.

The whole idea of SOFII itself becomes even more appropriate in tough times. Why trouble to think of your own great idea if you can borrow someone else’s? Why take a risk testing the unknown when you can see how well or otherwise similar initiatives fared, when used by others?

To quote (very reluctantly) Donald Rumsfeld, fundraisers suffer from too many ‘unknown unknowns’, particularly in hard times. So I hope you’ll direct your followers to SOFII, where as many of the ‘known knowns’ as we can uncover are being gathered and displayed to help fundraisers to shed light on the best ways of doing things, however hard times get. And all for free, too."

I am going to pick on a couple of good ideas every weekend for a while, and blog them up to remind people to check it out.

Please, take time to sign up for SOFII- it is a charity, it is free and it is bloody useful with tons of ideas there - just for you.

Sean Triner

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