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What do you do when your most valuable donors don’t read your appeals?

Bluefrog Fundraising has just completed a detailed qualitative study into attitudes to giving and – perhaps more importantly, fundraising – amongst mid-value donors in the USA. It’s the fifth country we’ve looked at in this specific programme of research (the others being the UK, Canada, Australia and Ireland). I’ll be sharing findings at three conferences.…

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Why we should be worried about where donors get their information from.

I’ve just had my first debrief on a significant qualitative study that Bluefrog Fundraising has undertaken looking at what UK donors think about the recent series of safeguarding stories. We’ve uncovered some things that you might expect, but a great deal of what we’ve found has been a surprise even for someone like me, who…

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Not much has changed in the fundraising environment since 1971

Recently, I had the chance to read a 47 year-old review of the UK fundraising market, produced by a long-closed advertising agency, Rupert Chetwynd and Partners. As I turned the pages, I found myself thinking that much of the content could have been written a few months ago, not in 1971 – a time when…

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What do donors need from you?

As fundraisers we are in a very fortunate position. We have more advice available to us through books, blogs, videos and conferences that any other generation in history. But that presents a peculiar set of difficulties. How on earth do we differentiate between the good stuff that will actually help and the crazy, flash-in-the-pan idea…

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When culture doesn’t translate into giving

Fly to one of the international fundraising conferences and you’ll no doubt be presented with more great fundraising ideas than you can shake the proverbial stick at. You might well be planning your next big campaign before the wheels on your plane touch down on home soil. But – and here’s the thing – how…

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Looking after donors by looking after your team

Following on from the changes at Bluefrog Towers, we’ve caught our breath and looked at what we want Bluefrog Fundraising to be. It’s easy to see that there will be many differences from the old Bluefrog. The fundraising landscape is very different from what we knew just a few years ago. And when we examine…

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How to avoid the misuse of emotion in fundraising

  Earlier this year I wrote one of my longest ever opinion pieces on fundraising. It’s on the use and misuse of emotion and was written for the Commission on the Donor Experience. You can find the full-length version on SOFII by clicking here. But be warned, it’s more like a dissertation than a blog…

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Why I had to close Bluefrog down (and why I set up Bluefrog Fundraising)

UPDATE – 19 April 2018: A recent appeal to the VAT Tribunal by a company with much deeper pockets than Bluefrog has succeeded in overturning the decision to reinterpret the rules relating to the printing and delivery of mailing packs. If the case is not appealed, or if the Upper Tribunal supports the first-tier tribunal’s…

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What’s the point of copying if we all have different exam papers?

A few days ago, I shared this quote from the ad man, Bill Bernbach on Twitter (if you don’t know who he was, take a look at this). “Imitation can be commercial suicide”. I suggested copying was pretty normal for charities and I asked if this was one of the key reasons why we had…

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Mobile fundraising is not a magic bullet

As quickly as mobile fundraising took off in the UK, so it soon fell into decline. But for a few years, every charity seemed keen to have their own mobile campaign. Open a newspaper, switch on the TV, walk down the street or climb aboard a train and you’d be confronted by ad after ad…

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