With  just one week until the first IFC Pop in Johannesburg (16 February) at GIBS in Illovo, the Resource Alliance has added three new, exciting sessions to the agenda.  At IFC 2016, these were the Big Room* sessions... where some of the biggest thinkers faced big audiences to take on some of the biggest issues in – you guess it – a big room!

Here's what your day will look like if you’re coming to any of the three events (Cape Town on 9 March at USB and Durban on 22 March at UKZN Business School). If you still haven’t signed up, there’s still time. Get more information here.

8h00 to 9h05: Delegate registration and welcome

9h00 to 10h15: Opening plenary

10h30 to 12h00: The Convergence Emergence* – a corporate panel: How to re-engineer the sector’s engagement with business to maximise impact through partnerships

10h30 to 11h15: Putting your supporter in the story – and getting  your story straight

11h30 to 12h00: Impact Reporting -- The holy grail of describing the change your charity exists to achieve

12h00 to 13h30: New Rules for Revolutionaries* – insights into Bernie Sanders’ fantastically successful campaign to mobilise support and raise millions for his US presidential nomination

12h00 to 12h30: Write what the funder wants to read - drafting winning proposals for grant making foundations

14h00 to 15h00: Relationship Fundraising

14h00 to 14h30: How to engage with legacies

14h30 to 14h40: Innovation for bigger impact

14h40 to 15h00: Reinventing F2F: The impact of increased engagement and virtual reality

15h15 to 16h45: Inspiration Imperative* – How inspiration can transform organisations.

Take note that there’s some overlap with the sessions. If you hadn’t already planned to, you might want to bring along a colleague so you can cover the most ground.  Click here for more information and to book.

Looking forward to seeing you there!

The Resource Alliance team



#FRO16 is a free virtual conference designed to help social impact organisations of every size and type to benefit from technological change.

Last year 3,000 people around the world signed up for Fundraising Online, 244 of which were from South Africa.

This year, we want to help even more social impact organisations in South Africa access this amazing event, so we’re holding two one-day events that you can attend in either Cape Town or Johannesburg.

We’ll be showing a selection of curated #FRO16 sessions on big screens followed by live Q&A with some of our great speakers. Plus there’ll be snacks and time for networking!

8:30am – 3:30pm – Nedbank Private Wealth Auditorium, V&A Waterfront Limited to 200 places

9am – 3:30pm – GIBS, Illovo Johannesburg Limited to 140 places!



Every year, the International Fundraising Congress (IFC) brings around 1000 attendees (mostly fundraisers) from over 60 countries, representing 500 organisationstogether in The Netherlands, for what many regard as the pre-eminent fundraising conference.

"We’ve entered a time in which the once stark line between sectors is beginning to blur. Where traditional models of giving are being challenged by new kinds of social investment. With everything in a state of change, the IFC will help you sort out temporary fads from game changing trends, giving you an understanding of what is real and how to capitalise on it," says Kyla Shawyer CEO, of The Resource Alliance.

The IFC provides unparalleled learning and networking opportunities in both formal and informal settings and is likely to be one of the best learning opportunities you canever experience and will help take your fundraising to a new level.

For more information and details on how to secure your place visit


There was a massive amount of little to report for another year; why print won't die

"Are we there yet?"

Look... if online were a human, it would still be wearing diapers and running into things. Don't expect a new medium to reveal its secrets quickly. Gutenberg introduced movable type in 1439, after all ... and we're still learning how to make a good printed page.

Below: a related test question from my "latest book in progress," Donor Communications 101: The TEST ~ for boards, bosses, and fundraisers: to promote a common understanding of profitable best practices in appeals, newsletters, and thanks; both printed and digital

Question: In 2013, in the US, ONLINE giving accounted for how much of the TOTAL given to charity?

[  ] 2%
[  ] 12%
[  ] 22%

Notes, assumptions, and the answer....

The Chronicle of Philanthropy asked America's 400 largest charities for data about their online fundraising results for 2013. And what did our industry learn?

"While online fundraising continues to gain steam, it still accounts for a very small portion of the money charities rely on," the Chronicle reported.[1] "Among the 76 nonprofits that provided both their online and overall giving totals for 2013, the median share of online gifts is just 2 percent of all donations from private sources."

So there's the answer: two percent. In 2013.

Two point ONE percent in 2014.

Two point TWO percent in 2015.

You see how slowly this goes. Two reasons why?

(1) online is still in its early days, so there is a lot to figure out yet;

(2) online is not in fact REPLACING traditional methods of raising money like direct mail, it is AUGMENTING them. Online has added a very active, very compelling new channel to the marketing mix ... but it has limits, too.

I know I know I know: online giving looks like a sure thing. "Everybody's" online now! That's true enough, at least in developed countries: in the US, in 2013, 85% of the population "used the internet."[2]

And yet...

Online has not served up an overflowing slice of that juicy giving pie fundraisers would love to muzzle into.

So far, it's been a pretty thin crepe. Two-percent thin.

Patience, I guess. How long did it take Jeff Bezos to build a trusting, willing, eager culture of online shopping at Amazon? A decade at least? Probably more. He had to invent a new international industry from the bottom up. He unapologetically burned through Himalayas of investor cash, turning his digital marketplace into a wonder of the world, placing R&D before profits, creating a new and blissfully better customer experience.

What Walt Disney did for entertainment, Jeff Bezos did for shopping.

We express ourselves through consumption. He gave us the world's best place to consume.

Now, where's charity's Jeff Bezos?

Why print won't die

Here's the thing: KNOW YOUR TARGET.

Keep working on your online ... but don't neglect your print: direct mail, newsletters, thanks, welcome kits, invitations, special reports, gratitude reports, annual reports, alerts, catalogs, all that kind of stuff.

You see, from 2015 through 2035, baby boomers will dominate the charity marketplace, experts predict[3]; since most US donors are 55 years of age or older, studies show.[4]

These core donors grew up with print. They love print. They revere print. They romanticize print. Most important: they respond to print, if it's any good. (And to that point: How's your DCQ these days? Your "donor-centered quotient"? If it's still pretty low, you could be making a lot more money. Just saying.)

It's not going to be print VS. online for the baby boom donors.

For them, it will always be print AND online.

[1] May 18, 2014, "Online Giving Grows More Sophisticated," Chronicle of Philanthropy [2] Pew Research, Sept. 25, 2013. [3] And when they're gone, the next new generation of graying donor/heroes will step right up. It's predictable human behavior, for both economic and brain reasons. [4] 68% of US donors are 55 and older, according to TrueSense, a national direct mail firm.


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