#126 | Was marketing a mistake for fundraising?

I suspect many of our listeners read Ken Burnett’s Relationship Fundraising at the beginning of their careers. For more than four decades, Ken has been an advocate for the fundraising profession and is routinely invited to speak to where the we are headed and ways we might improve our practice. What I most sensed in this conversation with Ken was his sincere appreciation for all that fundraising has afforded him and his gratitude for the endless number of organizations that he has been privileged to support. This was certainly a great conversation for anyone who wants to be up to speed on many of the challenges that have effected fundraising practice in the United Kingdom and to hear some insightful commentary from one of fundraising’s greatest champions.

In 2015 Ken wrote a blog post that caught my attention. In it he courageously asserted that marketing was a mistake for fundraising and insisted that donors don’t want the causes they believe in to sell to them. He insisted that donors don’t like to be interrupted or irritated by us us either. Ken was quite adamant that fundraising has been degraded to less than meaningful engagement and that only by reversing this trend will fundraising achieve its full potential.

As always, we are very grateful to OneCause for being our generous sponsor!

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