Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Knowledgeable networking: 10 top tips for creating connections

Love it or loathe it, networking is an essential part of face to face work across all sectors. Making contacts will open doors and create opportunities. Despite its importance, networking is not rocket science. Having said that, there are a few pointers that can help you on your way to becoming the king, or queen, of successful schmoozing.


Thursday, 20 February 2014

What can we learn from the Brit Awards?

Watching the Brits, it's impossible to miss the in your face MasterCard/Brits partnership. It brings together my two loves - not Bruno Mars and debt, but music and relationship building. This high profile relationship has however come under unwanted scrutiny for the terribly handled PR - and by the company employed to make the most out of this partnership.

If you've not followed this particular storm, it involved the PR agency offering journalists tickets to the Brits in exchange for following a few simple tasks...like tweeting the hashtag #PricelessSurprises and mentioning the sponsor in any coverage. Unsurprisingly, the journos were not impressed and #PricelessSurprises has been used in a different way than the agency had anticipated.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Corporate relationship building - brick by brick

Hannah (@hannahbrodie) here again, following up from last week's blog: Corporate fundraising: tilling the ground 

This time, I'm looking at how to begin to build a relationship with a new corporate contact. 

What makes one company more likely to give to a project than another? Always be on the look-out for common values and a mutually beneficial opportunity. You won’t necessarily be aware of the exact synergy until you’ve met. Maybe the company wants to promote their brand to a group that you are engaged with. Perhaps your aims fit in with their own corporate social responsibility strategy.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Corporate fundraising: tilling the ground

Hello, I’m Hannah. I have over 12 years of corporate relationship building under my belt and as this is my first blog post, I thought I’d start with how to prepare for seeking out a corporate supporter.

A new project appears on the horizon. Someone (not a fundraiser) proudly presents a list of companies to you that they think might have an interest in funding the project. You take a look at the list and... *sigh*. It’s the same list of companies that comes up every time: a couple of huge global corporations; a few large local operations, then there’s that business with a CEO who’s got a 'connection' to your charity. Time to think out of the box.

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

11 ways to tell your story in your appeal letter

If your appeal letter isn’t pulling in enough money in the last few years, it might be the downturn. It might also be because your appeal letter reads like a grant proposal.

“Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinion, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.” -Oscar Wilde

So how can you come right out and be more original with your appeal letters? How can you be brave and stand up and write something different than has been tried before? Follow these 11 tips. I found them at James Altrucher’s blog, then rewrote them for a nonprofit fundraising perspective.

1. Be Honest. Tell people the stuff they all think but nobody ever says. So, what is the big thing that people think but never say about your cause? Maybe they’re thinking, “I don’t really know what you do” or “I don’t know why I should care about this” or “this problem is hopeless. Why don’t you just give up?” So say, “Should we give up?” that’s honesty.

2. Take out the first three paragraphs you write. See if it makes your story more immediate, more clear. Recently I did this for a nonprofit client and it INSTANTLY improved the story. Often your first three paragraphs are just a warm-up to the story. Your reader doesn’t need a warm-up. They need to be thrown into that story.