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Day 2 of the IoF convention

Alistair Kelly By Alistair Kelly

It’s the second day of the convention and if people were feeling a little hazy after the awards ceremony last night, no one’s giving anything away. It’s been an excellent day of practical discussion and knowledge sharing but there are a few things I know I’ll be taking from the day.  

1. Drive growth through stewardship

Good stewardship is critically important - but did you know that by continually reviewing how you deliver stewardship not only can you enrich supporter experiences but you can drive growth. Beccy Murrell from THINK Consulting Solutions and Malina Szreter from Teenage Cancer Trust had some great ideas around how to harness the passion of their community fundraising community and how to deliver a better supporter experience.

Key learnings:

Know who you are stewarding
Take your time, get to know them, it is invaluable.

Tier your stewardship
Assign supporters to one of three levels right from the start. 1=lower value and lower engagement, 3=higher value and higher engagement. This will help you deliver an appropriate level of stewardship.

Document and review process
This is a process without an end i’m afraid, it’s like painting the forth bridge.

Check reality against theory
Be a mystery shopper yourself so you can make sure what you experience matches up to what you planned.

Ask supporters what they want
Get feedback, make sure you are not over/under servicing your supporters.

Steward to deepen engagement
This will repay in lifetime value.



2. Insight is key to innovation

Innovation is being talked about a lot these days - rightly so. If you are not innovating you are on a sure fire winner to be left behind. Paul Amadi from the MS Society and Yvette Gyles, from the  Management Centre shared their experinces on their work on the MS Society’s #KissGoodbyeToMS and how innovation played a key role.

There are simple steps you can use when trying to innovate as a team…
1. Go for a burst, brains work better in short sharp sessions
2. Avoid idea killer phrases (you know the ones, like we can’t we’ve tried that before… on the naughty step if you do)
3. Build on other ideas, adaption is good embrace it.
4. Test and learn, test and learn

One last take away - use insight to overcome all your challenges, it’s the only way.


3. Great supporter experiences...delivered

It’s not just specific to the charity sector and many organisations suffer from operating in silos (even the smaller ones!) but Roger Lawson raised the importance of getting the whole team behind delivering great supporter experiences.

There were various thoughts that I took away including…. As fundraisers we obsess of over dissatisfaction, this is a mistake, our job is to make magic moments for supporters that they will remember… let’s surprise and delight them. We also think people they are rational, this is a mistake, they aren’t. How do you work out what the supporter wants? Use Insight and the voice of the supporter.

Last thought is don’t think of supporter care as a cost, use it to differentiate your brand promise.

This is just a mere handful of takeaways from the day - I hope you found them as informative as I have!

Alistair Kelly

Alistair Kelly

Creative Partner

Alistair is one of our co-founders. He has more than two decades of heavyweight agency experience behind him and is a fountain of ideas and creativity, particularly around print and fundraising. Alistair brings the clarity to our creative thinking and you can read his latest insights on our blog.