Episode 70: Wonder Woman! Maximising a chance and multiplying results 10x, with Dan McNally

Episode Notes

We strive to do our best with every fundraising opportunity, but inevitably some have greater potential than others. An invaluable skill is being able to spot these chances. And crucially, once you have identified one, what can you do to really make the most of it?

Today’s episode explores these themes as we talk to Dan McNally and hear the story of a young, heroic supporter of his charity, Muscular Dystrophy UK.

He relates how a brave six-year-old girl named Carmella set out to raise £5000 for the charity, and ended up smashing this target, raising more than £50,000. Dan explains what she did, and what he and his colleagues did to help add value and WOW factor, leading to dramatically increased income, national media coverage and the admiration of a Hollywood star.

Whatever kind of fundraising you do, I think you’re going to enjoy this story of triumph over adversity as well as our exploration of how to make the most of an opportunity.

If you want to see a BRILLIANT picture of Carmela, the super-hero of this story, follow this link: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-wiltshire-55862388

Further Resources

Free E-book. If you’d like to know powerful strategies to help you raise funds during the pandemic, then do check out my free E-book: Power Through The Pandemic – Seven ways to raise money with major donors, corporates and trusts, even now. You can download it for FREE here: brightspotfundraising.co.uk/power

Want training, inspiration and support to increase fundraising income? You can find out more about the Major Gifts Mastery Programme; the Corporate Partnerships Mastery Programme or the Individual Giving Mastery Programme by following these links.

Want to go deeper and get 24/7 access to LOTS more inspiring training content?

Our training and inspiration club for fundraisers the Bright Spot Members Club, has an extensive library of Rob’s best training films, a supportive community, and access to live masterclasses and problem-solving sessions with Rob and other experienced fundraising / leadership trainers EVERY WEEK. To find out more, or get access to all these resources for a month or two, go to www.brightspotmembersclub.co.uk/join/

Quote

‘Really trying to understand, what is the trigger that is making people donate, is incredibly powerful… Because then you can really hone in your message and make it as simple as possible.’

Dan McNally

‘If you hunt out stories of people triumphing in the face of adversity, they’re incredibly powerful… They make people feel good about themselves because they show there are amazing people out there…They encourage you to take action.’

Dan McNally

Full transcript of Episode 70

Rob:

Hello, and welcome to episode number 70 of the Fundraising Bright Spots podcast. This is the show for anyone who works in fundraising and who wants ideas and maybe a dose of inspiration to help you enjoy your job and raise more money, especially during the pandemic. And today I’m sharing a really interesting story of maximizing a great idea as related by a very experienced community fundraiser called Dan McNally, who is head of regional development for Muscular Dystrophy UK. One of the glorious fundraising successes for his charity in the last 18 months was achieved by a brave six year old girl named Carmela. She set out to raise £5,000 for the charity and ended up raising more than 10 times that figure, over £50,000, inspiring attention from national TV and a Hollywood star along the way. In our conversation, Dan relates the story of what she did, and what he and his colleagues did to help add value and the wow factor to the initiative. Whatever kind of fundraising you do, I think you’re going to enjoy this heroic story as well as Dan’s ideas and tips for how to maximize great opportunities.

Dan McNally, how are you?

Dan:

I’m good. Thanks, Rob.

Rob:

Welcome to the Fundraising Bright Spots podcast. Thank you so much for making time to talk to me. And just before we get into this fascinating story you mentioned to me the other day, you and I worked together quite a bit on and off over the years, especially when you were at British Heart Foundation, but now you’re at Muscular Dystrophy UK, could you just start off by telling us a tiny bit about that charity and what’s your role now?

Dan:

Fab. Yes. So I’ve been at Muscular Dystrophy UK, or MDUK sometimes abbreviated as, for almost a couple of years now. So it’s a national charity and it leads the fight against muscle wasting conditions. So about 70,000 children and adults in the UK are living with muscle weakening conditions that are progressive. And so we’re here as a charity to find treatments and cures, research, but also to drive improvement of people’s quality of life today as well. And I head up the, what most people would see as a community fundraising team. We just call it regional development within our charity. And obviously that could mean lots of different things to different charities, community fundraising is a very broad name. We don’t do national events in my team, but what we do, do is obviously the classic big sales, the national awareness days, the volunteer branches, but obviously much, much more than that. We’re a powerful team of relationship experts. And yeah, we just try and bring to life people’s fundraising and support them along the way when they want to fundraise on behalf of the charity.

Rob:

Got it. And the reason I especially wanted to invite you to the podcast is you’ve had some great successes during the pandemic, but there was one in particular, which was such an eye-catching story. And I found it really moving on several levels. I would love for you to share that story of what Carmela did, she’s a supporter of your charity. Would you just start by telling us in your words, what happened with this story?

Dan:

Sure. So like most of our amazing fundraisers in the charity world, it was someone who was incredibly connected to the cause, a beneficiary of ours and someone who has a muscle wasting condition that we support, and her name was Carmela. And she is a six year old girl. And as I say is affected by a muscular dystrophy, but she’s an incredibly bright, happy, has a zest for life, little girl, but has a sadly, a daily struggle with the fact that her rare form of muscular dystrophy means that her muscles are progressively getting weaker over time. So it’s affecting her ability to walk, her use of her arms. So simple things like brushing her teeth is a real challenge and it will ultimately shorten her life, but from looking at her and seeing her you would never know that because she’s incredibly brave, she takes each day as it comes. And it’s just incredibly funny and almost wise beyond her years. She’s, as I say, only six years old, but can handle a TV crew better than I can.

And so we had known about her for a number of years, she’s been a key supporter of ours, but when the pandemic hit we spotted that special potential in her story, because of her personality, because of what she wanted to do. And ultimately that led to us having a breakthrough with her personal fundraising challenge which she set itself and us raising over £50,000 for our charity, which was incredibly vital at that moment in time during the height of COVID.

Rob:

Sorry, Dan, jump in, to be clear, her original target, she said she wanted to raise 5,000. Was that right?

Dan:

Yes. £5,000. It was what we would call an, in aid of, or DIY supporter, someone who had a little fundraising idea and wanted to do that within her own community. But there were a few key critical steps that we were able to amplify her story in the wider than her own network that meant that then it really took off. And ultimately you need that incredible story, you need to have that passion and the connection to cause and the determination that six year old Carmela does, but we were able to do some quite specific things, which obviously we’ll talk about today, which I do believe means that you can act as a catalyst really, that all of a sudden things can take off and you’re gaining support from beyond your normal sphere of influence, essentially what we might call cold supporters are hearing about this story and wanting to support Carmela and her challenge.

Rob:

And so do you want to go from there then, she wanted to do this fundraising activity and what were a couple of the key steps along the way where the whole level went up? And what was your thought process on what was the charity able to do in partnership with Carmela and her family to make that happen?

Dan:

Yeah. So Carmela’s challenge in a nutshell, it took many different guises at the start, which maybe we’ll come on to, it took many twists and turns, but what it essentially honed down to in the end, and what was the key to her success, was that Carmela has a true, true love for Wonder Woman, the comic character and movie character, and has a real connection and affinity because many people see her as Wonder Woman as well with the daily struggles she has to go through. And so she decided she wanted to walk one kilometer a day, which was the equivalent of a marathon to you or me, and take her from her home in wheelchair all the way to the filming location of the new Wonder Woman 1984 film, that was just about to be released at the end of 2020.

And so it all centered around the fact that she was doing a daily walk with friends and family supporting her as well, to be able to get to the distance from where she lived all the way to the filming location of her favorite film. And really, I think what the essence of why it became so powerful was that is a genuine and authentic connection, she absolutely loves Wonder Woman and the character. And so already had lots of her merchandise, knew all about the films. And so was able to speak really articulately about that, but it’s also a really striking image. Carmela is a six year girl who dress up as Wonder Woman and take on her daily walking challenge. And so it was incredibly stark and contrasting images of her really bringing that superhero vibe to life and being a Wonder Woman herself as she took on this challenge in the hope to raise money for our charity, Muscular Dystrophy UK, to help fund research into her condition.

So, that’s the essence in a nutshell, but through luckily us being able to explore networks beyond where the family’s own connections, we were able to ultimately absolutely smash her target off, of £5,000. And it also culminated in the lead actress, Wonder Woman, in this new film, Gal Gadot, hearing about Carmela, recording her a special message while she appeared on the BBC’s One Show, and also donating an substantial amount to top her fundraising, JustGiving page up by now almost £5,000.

So it really was a glorious story which not only meant it was incredibly valuable to the charity to receive those funds at that time, but it was a way for us to get our awareness out there about what we do as a charity, but most importantly when I look back on that time, that crazy few months, it was also amazing for our supporter Carmela as well, she had some amazing experiences that will stay with her for the rest of her life. So it was a really nice package that was really heartwarming to go through, but did require us to be on top of our game and to be aware of those very key fundraising principles in order for it to achieve such great success as well.

Rob:

Thank you, Dan, for giving us the first main bit of the story, but maybe the listener is wondering, well, to be honest, we come across all kinds of inspiring supporters, all different ages, shapes and sizes, doing really brave, wonderful things. How could we, and at our best we’d be trying to maximize and support all of them to the best of our ability, but in this case, how did you realize that there was even more potential if you were to try to do things differently for Carmela?

Dan:

Definitely, I’ve actually touched on a couple which are that Carmela had connected something that was truly genuine to her, a love of the superhero Wonder Woman. And that really helped when she was giving media interviews, highlighting what a true hero Carmela is in her own right. That really worked as a concept. It was also incredibly visual. And so I think that’s really important to spread, people were sharing this incredibly moving image of a six year old dressed up as Wonder Woman battling through a walk. But I think also just that we knew that the media were looking for stories and they still are right now, that give readers a break and offer a fresh perspective during the pandemic. There are those green shoots of hope, there’s light even amongst the time of darkness. And I think that helped us start to reach a breakthrough point, that we were getting pickup when prior to the pandemic there wasn’t such an appetite for charitable stories.

And I think that appetite is still there, but we have to be realistic and candid about the potential of, and the power of this story. We all love every supporter and we want them to get press pickup and them to maybe be the next viral sensation, but I think the special ingredient in this, it’s probably the backstory, it’s the unusual element of how that supporter has chosen to fundraise for your charity. And I think you need to look at, if you’re looking to try and gain a little bit more traction with the media and for this to break out your normal sphere of supporters, is you need to ask yourself, what special quality does this story have that will compel people just to pay a little bit more attention, literally maybe even two or three seconds as they’re scrolling through their newsfeed amongst other hundreds of amazing fundraisers that we come across every day?

Does it provoke an emotion that will mean that you’re likely to share this story with your friends, or to share it online on social media? And does it have a sense in that story that is about inspiration, or is it provoking admiration? Because what we’ve found through doing research since this amazing story, we tried to undo it backwards and work out why it did so well. And that’s because research has shown us that if you share content about someone else’s personal story on your own social media, the driving motivation behind doing so is to share that feeling of, aww, that feeling of admiration with your friends or your followers online. And I think that’s at the heart of what this was, this was absolute awe, of what this amazing girl with a disability was doing. Very similar to the likes of Captain Tom, et cetera, obviously to a whole grander scale.

But I knew we were onto a winner with this story, because it wasn’t purely a campaign about sadness or loss, or it wasn’t a campaign trying to make someone laugh. Those things are important online, but actually what trumps them all is admiration and inspiration. If you hunt out such stories of people triumphing in the face of adversity, they’re incredibly powerful and it boosts people’s perception of the world, it makes them feel good about themselves once they’ve read the story, because it shows them that there are amazing people out there and encourages them then to take action. So try and hunt those stories out, and don’t be afraid to show what a challenge that supporter is going through. That this is not easy. This is not something that an everyday person would be able to appreciate without you going into the depths of that story.

Rob:

Yes, that makes sense. So said differently, deep down, it’s part of the human condition that life for all of us has its tough moments. Therefore, all of us at some level have a hunger for some sources of hope that things can get better, even if sometimes we’re not always sure of our own ability to do that. When we hear someone overcoming adversity and, or being especially brave, or big hearted, it does connect with the vast majority of human beings.

Dan:

Definitely. I think people took a lot of comfort during a time of disruption in the sense that they were bought into this story and they could see that there was a hero in it and that ultimately they were going to win. It actually gave a sense of fairness in the world and comfort when there wasn’t a lot of it around. And I don’t think that time has passed, when we switch on our TVs it’s still predominantly overwhelmed with coronavirus stories. And so there is still these opportunities to work your narrative in about how you’ve got a special story as well.

Rob:

Yeah. And a bit later, I’d love to get your take, because I gather you’ve got a colleague working in your press team who’s really experienced in understanding more about this of, A, spotting it, B, how and when to persist, because she’s worked on national newspapers and she understands what editors are looking for, but for now I want you to track back a bit to a couple of things you did as a fundraiser to take things to a new level and add value to Carmela to support her and help make her challenge and her adventure more rich, more exciting.

Dan:

So we had done what you may call the basic things, but it’s what we should all be trying to do with our supporters who are taking on community-based sponsored events. And that was to empower them, to explore their networks, almost informally using major donor network mapping for them to visualize over the phone. Okay. Yeah. I do know this person. I do know that person, I can share by JustGiving page of them. We all compartmentalize our lives. And all of a sudden by doing that we’d found a few different avenues to explore with workplace at colleagues, et cetera, that they could push, they’re JustGiving page out to. But I think what created then that next level of support is where we were able to then connect into people beyond Carmela and her parents’ own network, and beyond our own immediate circle of donors and followers as well.

We didn’t just share this on social media. We were really looking for a media outlet, a celebrity, an influencer, a social media page, something that could deliver that message to more people on mass, because we really believed in the powerful impact of this story. And we knew that, that could then have a knock on effect to the fundraising total made. So one of the things we did was I used LinkedIn for its purpose to look out and seek connections, because we knew the timeliness of this was that the film was due to be launched in a couple of months time, the Wonder Woman new DC film. And so I hunted out Warner Bros. contact details.

So I literally use LinkedIn advanced search feature and was able to find the lead publicist for the Wonder Woman 1984 film on LinkedIn and sent her a direct message, an unsolicited message, to say, check out this local news article, which we’d secured at the time, something just in the local paper, but it was online. So it had already, she could click on it and have a look and see the amazing images of Carmela practicing, ready to start her challenge. And she read it, it was that case of just putting yourself out there. I only had to go to one person and she, within a day, messaged me back with her mobile number to call her. Obviously she was working from home at the time and said, we’re really inspired by this. I think we can do something.

And so it was just that case of thinking, okay, whatever angle can we use here? We know the film’s out. So obviously that’s not always going to be the case for other people, but is there something at the moment in time that’s current that you can latch yourself onto? Because what we knew the media were looking for was relevance as well. How can this be linked into what’s going on at the moment? And so when we then fast forwarded to being able to get onto Good Morning Britain, they played the film trailer alongside Carmela’s story, because that just gave it that kind of placement on a timeline that she’s doing this and the film’s coming out. And it all worked really well together.

So that was one of the things that we did, was to reach out to the film company and they ultimately, during the pandemic where I’m sure struggling cinemas were closed, they took this as an opportunity. And were very genuine about it as well that they could give some amazing experiences to Carmela our supporter as well. But ultimately this may also generate some interesting press for the film as well.

Rob:

Hi, it’s Rob. And I just wanted to jump in really quickly to let you know about our Major Gifts Mastery Program, which is our flagship training program, and is a combination of master classes and one-to-one coaching, to help fundraising professionals from education and other charities to grow their confidence and their income. To give you a sense of the difference it makes, here’s what one fundraiser, Sara Davies, who is an experienced higher education fundraiser said about how it helped her.

Sara Davies:

I just finished the Major Gift Mastery Programme, and it’s been amazing. The last six months of doing this course, I’ve had the most successful time in my job to date. I’ve had three or four major breakthroughs, and my confidence has increased and it’s no coincidence. I know this course has helped massively. Also, my colleague who works with me has been doing this course as well, and she’s had the best six months in her career as well, again, major breakthroughs. And I really encourage you, if you can find the budgets within your organization, to apply for this.

Rob:

If you’d like to find out more, go to BrightSpotFundraising.co.uk/services, and then click on Major Gifts Mastery Program. For now, though, back to the interview as Dan and I continue to talk about the various lessons he learned through Carmela’s amazing challenge.

So before you did that, it was a wonderful story, but a local story and although Carmela was inspired by the film, the film didn’t know anything about Carmela at all, Carmela was just doing this thing separate, but by taking a chance and being a bit creative and a bit brave, but then technically making sure you included the authority of the newspaper article, rather than just explaining it yourself, you managed to get that person’s interest. And from there on, I guess it really snowballed in terms of national media and the One Show. And indeed, presumably that’s how then the star of the Wonder Woman film, Gal Gadot, that’s how she then heard about it.

Dan:

Yeah, exactly. So the way that obviously ITV and BBC local broadcast news works is that not only will they take, for their own local news, they can also then pass up that film for the national news and to other programs as well. And so my press colleagues were very keen to say, could this be considered? Could this be the happy story at the end of the news? And so once we’d run it, once it had been run on local BBC news, they did then pass it up for it to be then rolled up onto the next national six o’clock news. And then from then it was, again, rolled up onto be on BBC Breakfast news as well, which is the really top level of where you want to get to with this.

So that’s often how it works. You don’t necessarily will go straight into appearing on the red sofas of BBC Breakfast. They learn that this has got traction, this story, and that’s how it goes up. And then the way that the actress, lead actress, Gal Gadot, found out about it and then gave an incredible donation herself, was all through verified Twitter accounts. When you’re a celeb yourself, one of the options that appears to you if you’ve got the coveted blue tick, is that you can look at notifications only from other verified people, other celebs as well.

And we’d managed to get news outlets and other less well-known, but verified Twitter accounts tweeting about this. And because they are verified, it dropped into the notifications of Gal Gadot literally when she was filming a film, she was taking a break and was strolling through her Twitter feed and just spotted, again, because of the very visual aspect of this, saw Carmela with her walking sticks, trying to walk a kilometer a day, and in a very raw and genuine moment replied to her and said, “You are the real Wonder Woman,” and then gave a donation. And from that, it spiraled into her also recording a message for her.

And then I think the key to this story is constantly looking to keep that fire alight. We’d had the burning embers, we’d managed to get it a bit bigger, and we really knew we’d hit the big time when Gal had got involved, she’s a Hollywood actress, an incredibly talented woman. And so that in itself made a story, that then was rocket fuel to go to that next level where it was in a national newspapers, talking about the fact and a screenshot of the JustGiving donation, and a screenshot of her tweet, or promoted by us with a press release so that we could get our message in there, but we were then really snowballing at that point.

Rob:

And for the listeners who haven’t been involved in a story like this, and, or who’ve not worked in journalism, or don’t see the way editors are making these tough choices about what goes into their precious new slot. I gather they were one or two things you learned from your colleague in the press team at your charity. Could you just give us a couple of the insights, or lessons you learned from your colleague who does understand how these things work?

Dan:

Yes, definitely. I thought as a community fundraiser I had to be resilient, but I saw a whole new level come when Alice our press person who worked on this started to really knock on the doors of media outlets. And I think that’s because she appreciated having sat on the other side of the table, taking on being a journalist, she knew that this was an incredible human interest story, and she saw the value in the story. It wasn’t that she was just trying to do her job and get our charity’s name mentioned out there in the press, she knew that this was about trying to get this amazing story and trying to make essentially memories for Carmela to be featured in Hello! Magazine, on the front cover, those are the sorts of things that where I would have said, oh, okay, then, you’re not interested. That’s fine. That’s when an email would ping back from Alice saying, no, let’s go for it. Let’s really highlight something slightly different here and see why they’re missing out and go back again.

And offering exclusivity is a really key thing as well. So for all the different types of media outlet, we would say, if you’re able to get us on in the next 24 hours we’ll give you that interview as long as our support was happy for the first long lead publication, such as the Hello! Magazine, if you want the story you’re going to have to say yes to us, that bargaining power which didn’t come naturally to me, but comes from the strength of having a multi-skilled team around us, we had less than 10 people, but we all had our own strengths and experience. And that was really something that helped drive this story forward, knowing the value of what you have and really championing that persistence and tenacity, so as to get quite of extra few mentions in different media outlets when we wouldn’t have got it.

And just when you think the story is dying out, we’d had the amazing Gal Gadot donation, we found a different angle. We looked at, okay, we know that there’s a huge comic community out there. We know that Hollywood news is just in, there’s a whole enterprise around that of feeding on different stories. So we would go to those people and tap into that, the DC comic community and say, look at this, Wonder Woman, Gal Gadot, can you give us some coverage about that? And we found different pockets and communities out there that would be interested in this story, as I say, to keep that fire going as long as it could.

Rob:

Thank you, Dan. And it seems to me, there’s all kinds of lessons we could take from this, but in the limited time, what are last couple of lessons you took from this whole journey, which you would not necessarily have known about the last year or five years ago?

Dan:

Yeah, certainly. A couple that spring to mind is as a fundraiser, I was interested in, obviously the donations raised. So I was hitting that refresh on the JustGiving page, and very thankful to see it go up and up. One thing that I saw was that our biggest day of fundraising, which was over £6,000 in one day from the 1,600 people that donated, was actually from when we were published just on the England’s news on the BBC News website. So we’d had some amazing other days such as BBC Breakfast, as I mentioned, live on Channel 5 News, however people at that point, although they may have their phone in their hand, are not directly connected to technology when they’re watching the news. And by being on the local BBC News page, we were able to directly link through to the JustGiving page, and that’s what drove donations. People were inspired at that moment. And I think you’ve got to capture them there and then, and they were able to click through and make that donation.

And secondly, just on that JustGiving page theme as well, once we’d had over a thousand people donate, and the average donation was about £29, we downloaded on the backend of JustGiving the report. And I took all of the donation messages that people had been writing, because we’d had them from all across the world, and they weren’t just good luck, they had some real content in them, and I put them into a free website, we used one called MonkeyLearn, but it’s basically a word analysis website and it takes out all the filler and the conjunctives and it left us with essentially a word cloud of what were the most common things that people were saying about Carmela? What was inspiring them to give?

And what we saw was that they were using words like inspirational, impressive, you’re strong, keep fighting, you’re the real Wonder Woman. And we used that to structure our future press releases and how we were talking about Carmela, because we knew those people were responding in that way. And so we could make sure that we really hit the message home with other similar people. So it wasn’t about triggering sadness, or heartache, it was that trialing against adversity. And we were using all of those emotions when we were talking about this incredible story.

Rob:

So that’s really interesting, Dan, that’s one reason why earlier in this conversation you could say with such conviction why this story resonated more than some other heroic stories, because you saw those 1,600 people telling you why they loved it in no uncertain terms of, that’s the thing that came up. But secondly, this is a tactic that fundraisers could use for lots of other things they’re trying to promote, isn’t it?

Dan:

Yeah, definitely. I think just trying to understand what is that trigger that is making people donate is incredibly powerful, because then you can really hone in your message and make it as simple as possible. Carmela’s story at the start was quite complicated. She was trying to do different stages of the walk at different mileages to get to her location. We stripped all of that back, because we realized what was just inspiring was just that at one kilometer a day, which is such a challenge, people were inspired to give. It wasn’t about the grand total of kilometers or miles that she was hoping to cover. It was about that very raw story. And that’s just what we presented to people.

Rob:

Yes. Dan, just one thing I picked up on that you said a moment before, which I thought was interesting, is all the while you’re working really hard and persistently on the one end to add value, you were saying, we must check-in with Carmela and her family to see if this is what she wants to do. Do you want to say just a little bit more? Because it’s quite a complex dynamic, isn’t it? But obviously the charity is never going to want to do anything that is not in the supporter’s interests.

Dan:

Definitely. As much as we’re applying some fundraising tactics and principles to try and make this story perform as best it can, ultimately we’ve always got the wellbeing of our supporter at the heart of what we’re doing. And we want to make sure that they’re comfortable of what’s going on and that they’re in control, because as you hopefully have heard, things can snowball quite quickly. This was only over a period of say six weeks that this all happened and we raised £50,000. And so that can feel quite an intense period of time if there’s media involvement in it.

So we always had a regular check in with the family, where that whole team that I talked about previously at the charity met on a Zoom call, or a phone call, with Carmela and her mum, Lucy, just to make sure that they were absolutely fine and that they felt that they were still driving this, it wasn’t out of control. And I think ultimately, as we said, what we were able to gain from this is not only to fulfill Carmela’s wishes, she raised well over £5,000, her target for the charity, she got some incredible experiences from this as well. And she’s so comfortable and confident in front of the camera and speaking to the press that she really enjoyed it too. But I think that’s a really important point that you do need to always constantly monitor that as well.

Rob:

Yeah. In terms of the bigger point, I hope that our listeners can see that there are some principles here which aren’t just restricted to this kind of support, or this kind of event, but actually this is a story of spotting a wonderful opportunity, in the best sense of the word, and then potentially deciding if and when to really go the extra mile to add value to it, and you could apply that to an event, or a corporate partnership, or anything really.

Dan:

Yeah. I think you’ve always got to have that extra little something to give as much as you want every supporter to have a great experience with you. You need to be able to roll out that red carpet for those things that just go absolutely above and beyond. And that’s something that we look to do, that kind of segmentation is important in community fundraising, because the most valuable commodity is time. And I think that just helps you have some guiding principles as to where you can invest your time for the benefit of the charity.

Rob:

Thank you, Dan. What we’ll do is put in the episode notes for this one or two of those amazing pictures which you sent me of Carmela and what she achieved, because if our listeners look at those, or maybe click through to the link, I think it’ll bring a smile to their face, but for now, Dan McNally, thank you so much for coming on to share the story. I think what Carmela and her family have achieved, and then what you’ve achieved to support her, is really inspiring to me, and I hope our listeners enjoy it too, and that they take some good ideas to help them in their own fundraising pursuits. So Dan, thanks for coming on the podcast, I will catch up with you very soon.

Dan:

Thank you.

Rob:

So I hope you enjoyed hearing about Carmela’s fabulous achievements and the lessons that Dan learned through this journey. And if you did find it helpful, it will be amazing if you could take a moment to share it, either with colleagues, or on social media, so that we can get these ideas and stories out to reach as many fundraisers as possible. Thank you very much for your help. If you’d like to see a picture and to read a bit more about Carmela’s inspiring achievement, we’ll put a link to the story in the episode notes, along with a full transcript of the episode. To find the notes, go to the podcast section of our website, which is BrightSpotFundraising.co.uk. As I mentioned earlier, we’ve recently launched our new set of three flagship mastery programs in Major Gifts, in corporate partnerships, and in individual giving.

These six month programs start in the autumn of 2021. And by combining virtual master classes with personal one-to-one coaching to help you solve the problems and implement the powerful strategies, they’re designed to help you take action and get results. To find out more, go to BrightSpotFundraising.co.uk/services. If you enjoyed the episode today, do remember to subscribe to the Fundraising Bright Spots podcast today so that you never miss an episode. Dan and I would love to hear what you think about this one. We’re both on LinkedIn, and on Twitter I am @woods_rob. Thanks so much for listening today. Good luck finding ways to maximize your fundraising opportunities. And I look forward to sharing another episode with you soon.