Thursday, 20 March 2014

Hope for Children unveils website for new fundraising initiative

Hope for Children (HOPE) has launched a responsive website for its brand new student fundraising initiative ‘Your Uni, Their Lives’ (YUTL), developed by creative design and marketing agency Satellite Creative.

The website follows on from the initiatives launch event which took place at Speaker’s House, Westminster on 26th February and was hosted by the Speaker of the House, the Rt Hon John Bercow MP.

Chris Lyne, HOPE Marketing Manager, said: “We wanted the site to showcase the amazing fundraising efforts of RAGs (Raising and Giving Societies), whilst connecting them with the East African projects that they have been supporting through HOPE. We also wanted to get across the excitement of the challenges they can continue to get involved in.

On top of that, it was important we didn’t lose any linkage with the HOPE brand, which is our greatest strength. I feel we achieved this and I am absolutely delighted with the final result. I really hope people find browsing the website an engaging experience.”

Features of the website include information on project work, challenges and partner profiles with real-time API totals showing how much each university has fundraised.

The initiative currently has seven UK university partners; Nottingham, York, Exeter, Bournemouth, UCL, Leeds and Abertay.

To find out more about Your Uni, Their Lives, please visit:

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Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Real-time giant Mother’s Day card for Oxfam to be displayed at Westfield

Proximity London have brought together  artist Lizzie Mary Cullen and cutting edge technology by Grand Visual to create a real time giant Mother’s Day card for Oxfam – a celebration of mums around the world as part of the charity’s Mother Appeal.

The Happiest Mother’s Day Card is a giant canvas divided up into lots of little squares. When a member of the public goes online and dedicates a square to their mum via the website, the artist will paint within that square and bring it to life. This means the more people that take part and celebrate their mum, the more the design of the card will grow and blossom.

Launching on Wednesday 19March at Westfield London, the art event will run for five days until Sunday 23 March. During this time, the public will be invited to dedicate their square online at (live from 19 March) – where they can also watch a live video stream of the artist working on the card and also make a small optional donation.

At the end of the event, the artwork will be turned into a giant Mother’s Day card, hopefully breaking the world record for most contributions to a greetings card. The attempt has been officially approved by Guinness World Records with the current record standing at 5,339 contributions.

Creative agency Proximity London devised the strategy, creative concept and execution (including web user experience and design) and overall management of the event.

Oxfam’s brief to Proximity London was to generate buzz and publicity for Oxfam’s Mother Appeal (a mass audience fundraiser to raise over £10 million to help mothers worldwide lift themselves and their families out of poverty for good); then translate this buzz into donations and data capture for future support.

John Treacy, Executive Creative Director at Proximity London said, “The Happiest Mother’s Day card blends a live event with digital innovation to create a powerful idea that drives awareness, participation and ultimately donation.  But more than that, it’s also a celebration of some of the most powerful and important people in the world, in the run up to the day we think of them the most.”

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Tuesday, 18 March 2014

3 Quick and Dirty Facebook Page Tweaks That Will Dramatically Increase Your Reach

Most of what you read about creating more reach for your nonprofit’s Facebook Page either has to do with Facebook Ads or optimizing content.

And while those things are crucial, it’s also important not to forget about these 3 settings that can dramatically increase your reach:

1. Turn On Posting Ability

Allowing Facebook users to post photos and videos to your page increases your exposure to their friends.

For example, the friends of the Facebook users who’ve posted these photos of rabbits will see a story in their News Feed, exposing them to the mission of the National Wildlife Federation.

To allow others to post photos, videos, text updates and links to your page, click “Edit Settings” under the "Edit Page" menu item in your admin panel. Once you're there, select both options, as shown below.

2. Turn On Tagging

Let Facebook users tag themselves and their friends in photos you post to your Page.

This way when you post pictures from an event, you can invite your fans to tag themselves and their friends. Tagged friends (who may not be fans) are prompted to visit the photo and like the Page.

To turn tagging on, click “Edit Settings” under the "Edit Page" and then select tagging ability.

tagging ability 3 Quick and Dirty Facebook Page Tweaks That Will Dramatically Increase Your Reach

3. Turn On Replies

Allowing for threaded commenting helps create more engagement on posts in two ways:

  1. With notifications to users who’ve been replied to with a comment.
  2. With threaded comments that organize conversations better.

To turn threaded replies on, click “Edit Settings” under the "Edit Page" and then scroll down to select tagging ability.

allow replies 3 Quick and Dirty Facebook Page Tweaks That Will Dramatically Increase Your Reach

Once this option is selected you’ll notice a second level of commenting within your Page updates.

Have you already selected these options for your Page? How’s it Working?

photo cred – Flickr: Creative Commons

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Facebook Timeline Contests – Everything Your Nonprofit Needs for Success

Facebook Timeline Contests   Everything Your Nonprofit Needs for Success

Facebook’s opened up a fun new avenue for pages to entertain fans and boost engagement. Businesses and organizations may now reward fans for their activity (likes and comments, but not shares) on the page’s Timeline.

Counting likes on a post or manually checking the comments for a right answer or a nice photo is not fun. Without an application to help you with that, you'll have to do it!

We've built a totally free Timeline Contest Management app that you can try out here. It will help you run sweepstakes, Quizzes and Photo Contests without the burden of checking likes and comments manually or in a spreadsheet!

But first, let's start with the basics.

The 411 on Facebook timeline contests

You can reward fans and visitors for:

  • Posting on your Page (including photos)
  • Private messaging your page
  • Liking a page post
  • Commenting on a page post (including comments with photos)
  • Accumulating likes on their posts or comments (including comments with photos)

You can’t:

  1. Ask users to tag themselves in a photo they are not pictured in
  2. Ask users to share a post
  3. Ask users to post something on theirs or their friends' timelines.

Basically, you can run a quiz by posting a question and rewarding a correct answer.

You must:

  • Have official rules for your contest (included in the text or linked within your post)
  • Offer terms and eligibility requirements in your rules (ex: age and residency restrictions)
  • Acknowledge that the promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook (this language must be included in your post)
  • Comply with local, state and country rules regarding promotions, and prizes

You may not:

  • Run a contest on a personal profile
  • Offer alcohol as a reward. There is no way to verify participants’ ages.

Unfortunately, there’s no escaping the legalese. Once your post is properly crafted, it will likely end up looking like a long disclaimer rather than a fun promotion.

Facebook Timeline Contests   Everything Your Nonprofit Needs for Success

This is a properly formatted Timeline Contest post. Fun, huh?

You are responsible for compliance with your local regulations

French contest rules must be registered with a notary public, Italian contest entries must be collected on a server located in Italy, and in Brazil, you can only run sweepstakes in very limited cases. California has different regulations for online giveaways than Connecticut.


Timeline contests versus page contest apps

Most page contest apps come with a fan gate for recruiting fans, and a form for qualifying them. If your goal is gaining new fans and knowing who they are, a Timeline Contest won’t help you.

However, if your engagement and organic reach are dwindling, a Timeline Contest can kick it up a notch.

After a healthy Timeline Contest with a heavy engagement period, more fans and unique users will see your future posts. And that’s good for your page!

Fraud protection in page contest apps

Some contest apps come with built in fraud protection. Fraud is real, and rampant in Facebook contests.

Scammers know what they’re doing – creating fake Facebook profiles and working in tandem with other scammers to manipulate voting results.

Most of your participants won’t bother to read your contest rules. Scammers trying to game the system will pick apart each word.

Facebook Timeline Contests   Everything Your Nonprofit Needs for Success

Some third party app providers have built fraud protection directly into your contest. Avoiding scammers can be easy.

If you run a sweepstakes on your page, plan to spend some time verifying your winners are legit.

If you run a voting contest (i.e. "comments or photos with the most likes") it will be nearly impossible to verify the users who obtained the most likes didn’t employ tricks such as a vote exchange scheme or votes from fake Facebook accounts.

If you run a quiz type contest, keep in mind users can edit their comments. You have no way of knowing if an answer was correct when the first time or if it was edited after the user saw other participants' answers.
Keep the size and nature of your audience in mind, and be sure to award prizes that will only attract genuine fans.

The bottom line

If your goal is to keep up interactions and increase engagement, run a Timeline Contest. Just be prepared to invest some time monitoring your entries closely.

If your goal is to recruit new fans and collect qualified data, or you’re giving away larger, more valuable prizes, choose a Contest App with built in fraud protection.

Emeric Ernoult is the CEO of agoraPulse, and creator of a free Timeline Content Management App.


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Online counselling service for young people in Brighton & Hove

Two Brighton & Hove based youth organisations – Sussex Central YMCA and the Young People’s Centre – are launching a new online counselling service for young people aged 13-25 in Brighton & Hove.

The ‘E-motion’ online counselling project is a partnership between Sussex Central YMCA Youth Advice Centre, Impact-Initiatives Young People’s Centre, and the Brighton and Hove Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG.)

The digital service which will offer 13-25 year olds in Brighton & Hove the opportunity to experience counselling by email, compliments their already existing vital face to face counselling services.

E-motion is open to everyone, however due to the nature of their work and the funding available, the service aims to target young people who, for whatever reason do not chose to access face to face counselling.

It will also be a great help when other services are shut during school holidays or when young individuals can’t travel to a face-to-face appointment or can’t make the same time every week.

To get in touch, individuals send  an email to . They are then invited to give some basic details about themselves. E-motion then tailor the online counselling to make sure it is the right service for the individual. 

Ginny Roads, Counselling Co-ordinator at the Young People’s Counselling Service in Central Brighton said: “This is an exciting new project giving young people the opportunity access an alternative to counselling other than talking to a counsellor face to face. It meets young people where they feel most comfortable, is often more convenient and reflects their growing use of technology and the internet “

At present the service is a pilot project, but all e- counsellors are experienced in dealing with young people, have completed online counselling training and work in accordance with the BACP professional codes and standards. By working with the Brighton and Hove CCG and their GP’s the project will be promoted accordingly to make sure that everyone knows how and where to refer to.

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Older people lack digital skills to access new health services

Older people are the biggest users of health and care services, with the average NHS spend for retired households nearly double that for non-retired households. 

But many lack the skills to take advantage of changes in the way healthcare is being delivered, warns Digital Unite, one of the UK’s main providers of digital skills learning.

Technology is transforming the face of healthcare and bringing huge benefits to patients. Being able to book appointments online, order repeat prescriptions and improved access to online information and services can really advance patients’ health and well-being. Video calling your GP and personal health monitoring systems through mobile phone apps may be solutions for the future.

However, many older people still aren’t online or don’t have the skills to use such services. New ONS figures (Q4, 2013) show that 6.7 million adults in the UK have never used the internet, with 5.8 million of them aged 55 and over.

Dick Stroud of Digital Unite says: “It’s vital that we encourage and inspire these millions of older people to get online. The healthcare industry can help by signposting to the many resources that are available – whether it’s a beginners’ computer course at the local library or a national digital inclusion campaign like Spring Online from March 31-April.”

Spring Online in association with Carphone Warehouse sees thousands of free taster events and sessions held by volunteers all across the UK to help and inspire local people achieve a lasting use of the internet – and transform their lives.

Digital Unite research has shown that of those people over 55s who are using the internet, four out of five (86%) said it had improved their lives. 72% said that being online had helped reduce their feelings of isolation and 81% said that using the internet made them feel part of modern society. In addition 20% of older learners in a Digital Unite social housing learning programme felt their understanding of health related issues had improved as a result of being online.

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Monday, 17 March 2014

Making Your First Donor Retention Calendar, Step by Step

Mazarine Treyz Making Your First Donor Retention Calendar, Step by Step

Guest post by Mazarine Treyz, author of The Wild Woman's Guide to Fundraising, called one of the Top 10 books of 2010 by Beth Kanter, and author of the Networked Nonprofit. Her second book is The Wild Woman’s Guide to Social Media, published 2012, given a 5 star rating by Her latest book, Get the Job! Your Fundraising Career Empowerment Guide, was given a 5 star review by


Our donors don’t give year after year

Donors staying loyal is the exception, not the rule. According to Chuck Longfield, ten years ago the average retention rates of a newly acquired donor were roughly 33%.  Today it's 27%.

What can we do about this?

Make a donor retention calendar to keep your donors loyal!

OK, so donor retention isn’t part of your job description.

Your boss probably doesn’t religiously count how many donors were retained and how many were lost every year.

You just have to get money in, by any means necessary.

Meanwhile, that grant needs to get written, that trade show with potential sponsors is next week and you’ve got to craft your pitch, and your big event is coming up in two months and there’s still so much to do!

There's so much on your plate! How can you keep your head above water?

"Remember, good customer service is often just deciding what you’re going to be bad at, so that you can focus on the things that matter." – Uncommon Service, by Frei & Morriss

Even though this quote is from a for-profit business book, I’d like to invite you to think of it as donor service. Remember, good donor service is just deciding what you’re going to be bad at.

Here are 4 Steps to help you focus on the things that matter:

Step One: Don’t Focus on Everyone!

Try focusing on:

  • People who gave multiple times per year for the last two years.
  • People who give monthly
  • People who gave once a year for the last two years
  • Former board members (from the last two years)
  • Current volunteers

Another way to make this process less overwhelming is to decide different levels attention for different levels of donations.

Do you have a donations policy? Why not create a thanking policy?

Step Two: Make your Donor Retention more Manageable by Creating a Thanking Policy

Here are some examples of thanking policies:

1. Over $100 Check in the mail: Thank them with a phone call & letter.

2. Over $1000 check in the mail: Call them up and see if you can go to coffee

3.  Multi-year donor: thank them with a phone call

4. Once a year thank-a-thon for all donors

5. Thank recent donors on the anniversary of their first donation, and ask if they’d like to give again.

Step Three: Put it all Together in your Donor Retention Calendar

Once you know WHO to focus on, what does a donor retention calendar include?

  • Appeals
  • Surprise and delight tactics
  • Surveys
  • Friendraisers
  • Thank you notes
  • Monthly e-newsletter themes
  • Phone-a-thons
  • Thank-a-Thons
  • Volunteer Appreciation Days

BOTTOM LINE: Solicitations Calendar + Surveys + Event Calendar + E-News Calendar = Donor Retention Calendar


How can you fit all of these extra donor retention tasks into your already busy schedule?

You need to start having the conversation with your board, your volunteers, and other staff, that EVERYONE needs to be taking responsibility for fundraising.

On a personal level, try something that looks like this:

Step four:  Putting Retention into Action Every Day

Monday: Coffee with a donor

Tuesday: Email a donor

Wednesday: Call a donor

Thursday: Thank a donor with a note

Friday: Write up all donor touches, add to board report

If you’d like to get started on a systematic way to keep your donors, I have an e-course called Secrets of Keeping Your Donors that you might like, starting on March 28th, 2014. Go here to check it out!

And for even more expert advice on donor retention, check out our npEXPERT eBook and webinar series!

 npexperts donor retention banner ad 742x24622 Making Your First Donor Retention Calendar, Step by Step




photo cred: Sparklehausen, Flickr Creative Commons

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