In the final part of our examination of fundraising, charities could think about corporate partnerships and their organisation's impact as they seek to maximise fundraising income.
Think about your corporate partnerships
Corporate partnerships can be an excellent way to significantly increase fundraised income. Help for Heroes’ numerous national partnerships raise between £25,000 and more than £1m a year.
Beth Miles, fundraising and marketing director at Help for Heroes, says that most of these are based on relationship-building, rather than going through traditional charity of the year application processes.
And her advice for getting more out of your partnerships begins with listening to your partners: ask what they want to achieve from the partnership so that you can shape realistic, achievable goals and create activities that are truly meaningful to them.
But she also warns that charities need to be selective about their partners.
"We do ask our partners to commit to a minimum level of funding for us over the course of a year," she says. This can be challenging, she admits, but it helps to protect fundraising from external commercial challenges.
She says that constantly communicating with your partners about the impact their support is having can make a huge difference.
"The more ways a company can support us, the more engaged they become," Miles says.
"We raise more funds and we can do more to support their objectives , such as employee engagement, improving brand loyalty and raising their profiles as socially responsible brands."
Remember, it’s about impact
There might be pressure from above to deliver financial results, but, ultimately, the most successful fundraisers are those who never lose sight of the charity’s mission.
Joe Jenkins, the director of supporter impact and income at the Children’s Society, says: "If a fundraiser came to me asking for advice, having been told to increase their fundraised income, I’d encourage them to find out what the money is for and why it is needed now, and to challenge their organisation to collectively focus on impact through building long-term engagement with mission.
"Success should be judged by how much impact you’ve achieved, not how much your charity has grown."
The fundraising consultant Kemar Walford says fundraisers who want to boost their charity’s income need to take a step back and ask about the ‘why’ and the expected impact.
"If you don’t understand these, you will find it difficult to take your donors on the journey," he says.
"I would then say to start with what you do and work upwards from there.
Understanding what works well, what could work better and what’s the best use of your time will help you to formulate a plan or an approach. We all know that good and great fundraisers have very little time and resources to spare, so you need to be effective in picking the right areas to work on."