Thursday, 7 February 2013

I've seen the future

Cracking discussion at the fundraising consultants group last week. For those of you who missed it let me recap. I talked about likely trends in fundraising and drew some comparisons with what is happening on the High Street of Anytown UK.

I reminded everyone that, despite what Yogi Beera said ("The future ain't what it used to be") there are always opportunities if you focus clearly and are prepared to take (calculated) risks. Here are my five tips for 2013.

Firstly, Public Sector Funding - even in adversity (£5bn cuts in the next spending round) there are opportunites where the government is dismantling the welfare state and outsourcing everything they can lay their hands on.

Secondly, Crowdfunding - it is beginning to work but as Howard Lake says, whatever else you do go mobile. In other words we're likely to see the tipping point this year when more website access is via mobile devices than standard computers. You simply must optimize anything you put up, for mobile devices.

Next, my favourite subject, the Baby Boomers. And not just for legacy prospects (cause we're never going to die - well not in larger numbers until about 2015) but for social investment. We really do want to change the world, but through investment not necessarily donations.

Fourth point is to think about our volunteers. Remember the Olympic factor. The volunteer army were outstanding and had a fantastic time. We need to make it as much fun for our active volunteers if we want them motivated and fundraising for us.

Lastly, but certainly not least, Retail.As I said, I’ve seen the future and it’s 99p! What is the only sector (apart from pawn shops) that is growing in double digit figures? It is the pound shop. Poundland, 99p and others have opened hundreds of shops in the last few years with many more to follow. We all seem to love a bargain. Charity shops have done a great job merchandising the higher value gifts ( putting the branded bags and clothes into upmarket areas like Chelsea and Kennsington. Where are the charity "everything at 99p" test shops? If we can't do the great bargains with donated goods then we don't deserve to succeed.

Over to you.