Our Sustainable Funding Manager Alison Pritchard shares her top tips on corporate fundraising for voluntary organisations.
Last week, IoF Cymru hosted another of their Raise and Shine breakfast networking events in Cardiff.
This latest edition of Raise and Shine focused on corporate fundraising and featured a panel of corporate fundraisers from The Wallich, Welsh National Opera and Alzheimer’s Society answering questions and sharing their knowledge about all things corporate partnerships.
I went along to keep up with the latest trends and pick out some top tips to share with the wider sector.
Charity of the Year
When looking at pitching for Charity of the Year partnerships that are based on a staff vote, plan in advance and take the time to make initial connections months ahead of the vote. LinkedIn is a good way to find key contacts! Drip feed them information about your organisation and cause.
Pick your battles
‘Non-sexy’ charities that are unlikely to win a staff vote might like to approach companies about different ways of working together, or not approach the company at all – pick your battles.
Don’t give up
Getting a ‘No’ in response to a corporate pitch is often not necessarily the end of the story. Ask for feedback and see if there are other ways you might be able to develop a relationship.
I like this article about how a ‘no’ from a potential donor could develop into a ‘yes’ with the right discussion.
Money isn’t everything
Remember that money isn’t always the only or best way a corporate partnership could benefit your organisation
Partner up for longer
Panel members have noticed a move from 1-year partnerships to 2- or 3-year partnerships. This gives the charity and corporate more time to plan meaningful and strategic activities.
Use your imagination
Work with the corporate partner to plan activities for their staff that are attractive, meaningful and relevant to the company – avoid participation fatigue amongst their staff from having them run half marathons every year!
Know your worth
Charities don’t need to beg for corporate support – we have as much to offer our corporate partners as they have to offer us. Make sure to value your offer properly.
Ask your staff
Staff from across your charity can and should contribute to discussion about what your organisation can offer a corporate support.
These are just some of the hints and tips shared by the panel members. I’m very grateful that IoF Cymru can host these events so that fundraisers (whether that’s their job title or not) can come together and learn from each other.
All ‘Raise and Shine’ and the after-work equivalent ‘Raise and Wine’ events are open for anyone to book onto and are worth attending for excellent insights such as those above.
Consider joining the Institute of Fundraising for discounts to these and other events and training courses.
If you are not a member but want to sign up to the IoF Cymru newsletter, register here and make sure to tick the box for Wales updates.