Posted by & filed under Advocacy, Fundraising, Government Relations, Inspiration, Leadership/Management, Volunteers.

Thank you to our members who participated in our annual Day in the Ridings (DITR) initiative! Our members’ efforts were key in creating awareness of the role and value of professional fundraising to our federal government.

 

Over the past two years, 140 AFP members met with 164 MPs, Ministers, and government officials in 338 ridings across Canada to bring forward our “case” for AFP’s role in public policy development and asked elected officials to support three important policy priorities:

  1. A home in government for the charitable sector;
  2. an ongoing investment in data collection on the charitable sector; and
  3. consideration of tax exemption for gifts of private shares and real estate.

 

Thanks to this work, AFP’s message about the value of professional fundraising and the importance of an enabling environment for charities has spread across the country and across party lines. Read more »

Posted by & filed under Advocacy, Board of Directors, Inspiration, Leadership/Management, Volunteers.

Originally published on AFP Global

 

What questions does Juniper Locilento, senior director, development at the YMCA of Greater Toronto ask herself as she heads into work every day?

When Juniper Locilento appeared before the Senate Committee on the Charitable Sector in her capacity as VP of Public Affairs for the AFP Greater Toronto Chapter on March 18, 2019, her five-minute submission summarized the most foundational pillar of fundraising.

“There is a well-documented connection between asking for, and securing, charitable contributions,” she told the committee. “The power of the ask has been demonstrated in experimental studies. Asking not only increases the probability of donating but also the amount that people give.”

She quoted the AFP Foundation for Philanthropy – Canada’s own biennial study, What Canadian Donors Want, which found 75% of people specifically asked to give will do so, compared to 53% of those who are not asked. That 22% differential represents hundreds of millions of incremental revenues that could enable charities to better address urgent need.

Fundraisers play a vital link between charities and their supporters, Juniper argued, and while Canadians acknowledge fundraising is important, they also have concerns. Read more »

Posted by & filed under Inspiration, Opinion.

By Kristin Savage

Those who are interested in fundraising and want to know all about the important aspects of it can get really valuable information from fundraising blogs. The confusing part is that there are so many blogs which are concerned with this topic that it is hard to pick the best ones.

For this purpose, I have done some research and surfaced 7 best fundraising blogs for 2019 that offer inspiration, good ideas, and informative content. If you want a high-quality education in fundraising these are the blogs you should look into.

  1. The AFP Toronto Blog (the one you’re currently reading) – As the largest AFP Chapter in the world, the AFP Toronto blog hosts content that benefits both members and non-members to provide varied resources for today’s fundraisers and those working in the non-profit sector. The Chapter also frequently accepts submissions from guest contributors to provide an array of diverse perspectives from people working directly in the field! Interested in contributing? Contact info@afptoronto.org to find out more.
  2. The Better Fundraising Blog – A great resource that claims to have the proven formula for effective fundraising.
  3. The Agitator – This blog offers ideas, applications, tools, processes, and case studies of break-through solutions in fundraising.
  4. Analytical Ones –Provides fundraising strategies rooted in insights driven from analytics and research.
  5. Bloomerang Blog – This blog helps nonprofit organizations to reach, engage, and retain the advocates they depend on to achieve their vision.
  6. Communicate! By Dennis Fischman –Aims to teach you how to win loyal friends for your nonprofit organization.
  7. Heroic Fundraising – A go-to blog for fresh industry insights.
  8. Clairification – This blog will motivate you and spark your passion for fundraising.

  Read more »

Posted by & filed under Campaign, Donor communications, Inspiration, Marketing/Communications, Opinion, Social Media, Stewardship/Donor Relations.

By Kayleigh Alexandra

 

Charities have a harder job than most when it comes to their marketing. While most brands offer their customers something in return for their custom, charities have to appeal to their donors’ generosity to see donations — easier said than done.

Charities need to up their game to see results. As a consequence, their marketing campaigns are often creative, innovative, and truly inspiring. Here are four of the best (and what you can learn from them).

 

Recommended reading: Developing Your Nonprofit Narrative

 

Save The Children (UK)

Back in 2014, the UK-based charity Save The Children partnered with creative agency Don’t Panic to arguably create the most hard-hitting marketing campaign on this list. Titled If London Were Syria (or Most Shocking Second a Day on YouTube), the first ad followed the life of a London schoolgirl whose life is turned upside-down when a civil war erupts in the UK. Created to bring the plight of Syrian child refugees to an otherwise distant audience, the ad was followed up two years later by another video following the same girl as she continues to survive in a war-torn UK.

 

 

This ad campaign is powerful, heart-wrenching and, above all, relatable. It is this empathetic quality that makes the ads so effective by placing the viewer painfully in the little girl’s shoes.

 

What you can learn from it: charities often work with terrible events or situations that seem unimaginable to western audiences.

War, genocide, and even domestic issues such as homelessness are incomprehensible to most donors. But by making these things relatable to your audience, even by forcing them to painfully confront these issues as Save The Children did, you’ll create an effective and impactful marketing campaign. Read more »

Posted by & filed under Campaign, Congress, Donor Centric, Donor communications, Inspiration, Marketing/Communications, Special Events.

By John Paul de Silva – originally published on the Social Focus Consulting blog.

 

Where all my social impact peeps at?!? What! What! I’m still hyped up over attending the astronomically amazing 2018 Association of Fundraising Professionals Congress which had the theme “DISRUPT Philanthropy.”

 

Why do we need to disrupt this sector? Caroline Riseboro, plenary speaker and President and CEO of Plan Canada, summed it up nicely, “A hyper-focus on major gifts is disguising the problem that we have an erosion of donors in the Canadian market. Philanthropy as a whole is on a decline.” And it’s no wonder given the challenge to get people’s attention, nevermind donations. We see 10,000 marketing messages a day while having an eight second attention span, according to Vanessa Landry, Director of Client Services at Fundraising Direct. That’s why we need disruption. We need new ideas, new ways of doing things, to advance the sector and keep being socially impactful.

 

Then, how do we become disruptive? We do it by delighting donors and through leadership. Delighting donors involves giving them an experience they can’t stop talking about, according to Jen Love, Partner at Agents of Good. When donors can’t stop talking about a positive experience, that leads to engagement, repeat donations, referrals to others, and ultimately growth for charities.

 

This first part of a two-part blog will cover how to delight donors. Based on my takeaways from attending some of the sessions and engaging with the #AFPCongress2018 feed, there are three main opportunities to delight donors: personalized communications, experiential events, and frictionless webpage design. Read more »

Posted by & filed under Career Development, Congress, Inspiration, Next Generation Philanthropy, Opinion.

Originally published on LinkedIn by Debra Thompson.

 

As I sit here on this unseasonably cold November day, I am reflective. This week, I spent 3 days in Toronto, starting very early Monday morning, at my very first AFP (Association of Fundraising Professionals) Toronto Congress and I am in awe. Before I share why, let’s take a step back.

 

Earlier this year, I embarked on a quest to investigate my next career move. After over 20 years in corporate sales, it was time for a change. A shift in my way of thinking. It had been a rough 4 years, including family health issues, mom’s second cancer diagnosis and the suicide of my dad. I recognized it was time to reflect, recalibrate and regroup to decide on my future career choices. This explorative journey with my career coach, Barbara Wilson, of Thrive Career Coaching, by my side, landed me smack in the middle of the non-profit sector, and specifically, into the world of fundraising. I realized that my corporate sales skills were transferable and in alignment with my values as a lifelong volunteer and I had a strong desire to do good and give back. In conversations with some amazing non-profit sector leaders, all roads led to AFP.   Read more »

Posted by & filed under Career Development, Congress, Inspiration, Opinion, Special Events.

By Tara Irwin, CFRE

 

With AFP Congress only a few weeks away, I’m starting to get excited to reconnect with my fundraising friends, meet some new contacts, and learn a few tips and tricks to help me excel in my role. While some people find conferences overwhelming (they are), with a little preparation, they can be very rewarding. Here’s what I like to do in order to maximize my Congress experience.

 

Meet People

Whether you’re planning to meet specific people or just chatting with the person beside you at lunch, Congress is the perfect opportunity to connect with other great minds in our sector. I like to have a couple of questions prepared, so I don’t feel like a robot asking everyone I meet the same thing. It’s okay to write down some notes, especially if there is a key person you’d like to chat with. I also like to connect with new contacts on LinkedIn right away. It’s a great platform to grow your network and communicate with like-minded professionals in the industry. Try to send a personal message noting where you met.

 

Be Present

This can be a hard one for all of us, especially when there is temptation to check your email constantly throughout the day. Since I’ve made the commitment to attend Congress and learn something new, I do my best to focus my attention on the session content instead of worrying what’s going on back at the office. I like to check my email in-between sessions, so not to be distracted from an interesting presentation or discussion. I use my out of office message to let people know that I’m at a conference learning something new that will help make me better at my job.

Read more »