Hopes and fears for 2011
I was asked to write a few paragraphs for The Guardian Voluntary Sector Network on my hopes and fears for 2011.
I've been meaning to write something on this for the last few weeks and as I've been a little busy, I thought it worth sharing. As you'll see, I don't think charities are out of the economic woods by any means:
"Money is going to be tight in 2011. Even if people don't lose their jobs, they are likely to know someone that will. As a result, donor recruitment is going to be tough and charities that don't put real effort into engaging their supporters are likely to see attrition rates increase. We have already seen indications that there have been regional downturns in giving following the election. For example, door to door recruitment is very tough in the north-east. I've also seen some national street recruitment attrition rates that look very worrying.
Donors are most definitely concerned about the future. That means they will cut back on things that they don't value. And if they don't enjoy a rewarding relationship with a charity, they are likely to stop giving – it's that simple.
To combat this, I hope that we see less self-centred, brand led charity advertising in 2011. In its place, there should be more focus on improving the relationship with donors. Fundraising isn't a branch of advertising. Success comes from showing donors that they are appreciated and their gifts have made a difference.
That's how charities can beat the impact of the recession. And it's how they can improve their fundraising no matter what the economic environment."
There are a a number of other views that are worth reading from Steve Bridger, Rob Dyson from Whizz-Kidz, Ben Kernighan from NCVO, Peter Wanless from the Big Lottery Fund, Caron Bradshaw from the Charity Finance Director's Group, Rob Cope from Remember a Charity and others.
You can read them all by clicking here. You'll also see a growing list of people commenting and adding their own hopes and fears. Why not share yours?
And if you'd like a reminder of what happened in 2010, this review from Google might be worth a few minutes of your time.