Pivoting and pirouetting: how face-to-face fundraising got the moves during coronavirus

Daryl Upsall, President of Daryl Upsall International reflects on what he learned from a turbulent year in face-to-face fundraising.

The very term face-to-face sounds like the antithesis of good behaviour during the current pandemic. Face-to-face fundraising (F2F), as we know it today – the individual signing up of regular or committed donors – was pioneered by my colleagues at Greenpeace in Vienna, Austria in 1995.

So, 2020 was planned to be a celebration of 25 years of what has become the most important donor recruitment tool in the world. A sell-out conference was planned for November 2020 in its place of birth, hosted and organised by The Austrian Fundraising Association and featuring a volunteer working group of global leaders of F2F from the largest INPOs* and agencies.

Face-to-face was on an all-time high, though not without its challenges. And then came coronavirus.

As a F2F pioneer at Greenpeace and the owner of agencies providing F2F fundraising services to the nonprofit sector for the last 15 years, I began to see as early as mid-February 2020 that dark storm clouds were gathering fast and no-one was going to find shelter from the impending storm. Already, we had coronavirus protocols in place in our headquarters in Madrid.

Read more here: https://sofii.org/article/how-face-to-face-fundraising-got-the-moves-during-coronavirus