Target unpopular groups, delegates told

Bankers could be one of the most important groups of givers, says Jo Swinhoe, the former director of fundraising and marketing at the Alzheimer's Society

Jo Swinhoe
Jo Swinhoe

Fundraisers should target unpopular groups such as bankers and the media, delegates were told yesterday.

Speaking at the Meeting of the Minds event, a question-and-answer session involving six eminent fundraisers, Jo Swinhoe, an Institute of Fundraising fellow and former director of fundraising and marketing at the Alzheimer’s Society, said bankers could be one of the most important groups of givers.

"The reputation of a group of people – bankers and corporate City types – is a bit iffy at the moment," she said. "Many are generous people and have given millions of pounds over time, not only to the arts and opera but also to less popular causes.

"Many would like to redeem the situation of their profession, so I would suggest that, if you have a connection in the City, ask people to be more open about their philanthropy. It is good for people who are not all tarred by the same brush, but it is also good for philanthropy because giving encourages giving."

John Gray, chief executive of the UCHL Charitable Foundation, said the media was an important source of donations and influence, and referenced the recent media scandals.

"The media can be influential – they want to be liked," he said. "Do not go to them because we want publicity; go to them because they have influence and funds they want to share."

Simon Burne, senior consultant at Think, said it was important for fundraisers to target the Facebook generation, including older users, who are its fastest-growing section.

- Read more news and comment from this year's IoF National Convention

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