Linda Solomon: You started Harvey McKinnon Associates in 1989 and are best known for raising big money for groups like Amnesty International, Unicef and OxFam.
Last Thursday, the Bank of Canada predicted a steep, short-term recession for the country ending sometime early next year; this despite economists at Canada's major financial institutions predictin
When times are tough, it's a good idea to look for the silver lining. Despite continued dark economic news and the growing concerns for our planet’s safety, I think I see one.
In the best of times, many nonprofits struggle with donor acquisition, retention, and, worst of all, lapsed donors.
For three decades, Harvey McKinnon has been one of Canada’s premier charitable fundraisers. The Vancouver author, documentary filmmaker, and motivational speaker has helped generate hundreds of millions of dollars for many nonprofit groups ranging from Amnesty International to the Marmot Recovery Foundation to UNICEF.
One would expect that McKinnon would be familiar with all aspects of philanthropy. But after he and a friend, Vancouver business consultant and long-time volunteer Azim Jamal, decided to cowrite a book on the subject, he was surprised to learn of new ways of giving back to the community.
“I have always been interested in why people give and how they give,” McKinnon told the Georgia Straight in a phone interview. “I decided to do a lot of research about five years ago, and realized to some extent that my definition of giving was fairly narrow. I was just thinking of time and money.”
The new edition of their book, The Power of Giving: How Giving Back Enriches Us All (Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin, $25), cites research showing that...
Harvey McKinnon and Marcia Thomson say that escalating fuel costs have already forced them to reduce energy consumption -- and that the carbon tax will only push them further along that green path.
As every fundraiser in Canada knows, it’s getting harder and harder to bring in the bucks their organizations need to fulfill their missions and provide the programs Canadians need.
Twenty-five years consulting nonprofits on how to raise money, and I’m still amazed – or, rather, flabbergasted – at how little attention some organizations pay to nurturing donor loyalty. Long-term relationships are crucial to any fundraising program.
The one-off gift is always welcome, of course, but it will not help much to achieve your mandate. It’s the second, third and fourth (and 40th) gifts that do that.
The gifts that come from the same supporters several times a year, year after year. The gifts from donors who remain loyal to your cause.
As I’ve often said, to make donors loyal to you, you must first become loyal to them. They will reward you because they know you care about them – and they know you care about them because of the way you treat them.
Where the money is
The best fundraising programs – whether staffed by one person or a hundred – all take great care to nurture this kind of lasting relationship. They know, of course – and you should, too – that donor loyalty is where the money is.
I was reading a business publication a short while ago and came upon an article about a chef who knew a thing or two about customer loyalty. His ideas were so good that now, whenever I give a fundraising seminar, I always mention this chef when I get to the part on building donor loyalty.
Monthly giving is a great way to raise more money from your donor base and guarantee a minimum level of income each month. This helps with monthly overhead and cash flow.
We believe the areas for the greatest fundraising growth today are: major donors, planned giving, and monthly giving.