Noon – 1:00 PM Workshop Check-In Welcome to Denver! Stop by the registration desk any time before 1:00 to check in and pick up your conference materials.
1:00 – 1:30 Introductions and Welcome This is your conference, let’s start it out right! Join conference faculty to kick off the program, meet your fellow attendees, and set the stage to make the most of our time together.
1:30 – 2:15 Finding Your Institutional Voice All Faculty Whether you’re new to your institution or you’ve been there for decades finding your voice and learning how to talk about the impact of annual giving on your campus is a must. In this session, each faculty member will talk about how they learned the ethos, culture, and narrative of their institutions and how they leverage that knowledge to produce results. Storytelling is an important part of the annual giving framework, and each campus has a uniquely special story to tell -- what’s your story?
2:15 – 2:30 Refreshment Break
2:30 – 3:45 Countdown clocks, challenge matches, and big numbers: All things Giving Day Giving Days have taken the advancement world by storm in recent years. Whether you have one, plan to add one, or continue to be asked about it by leadership, donors, or colleagues, Giving Days are a topic that keeps coming up. In this session, we’ll review the benefits, struggles, planning process, and scalability of giving days, so you can decide if adding this tactic is right for your institution and most importantly, your donors.
3:45 – 5:00 Interactive Group Workshop All Faculty Cap off the first day with a series of interactive group activities focused on real-world annual giving conundrums. The faculty has curated scenarios from their experiences on their campuses over decades of active annual giving leadership. Come prepared to meet new people, exchange ideas, and work together to solve annual giving problems.
5:00 – 6:00 Networking Reception
6:00 PM Conference adjourns for the day Dinner on your own. Small group dine-around sign-ups will be available earlier in the day at the registration desk for attendees looking to join a group for dinner at nearby restaurants.
8:00 – 9:00 AM Breakfast and Roundtable Discussions Join your peers for optional small group discussions during breakfast.
9:00 – 10:15 Small Tweaks – Big Improvements All Faculty In this session we harness the collective brain trust of the faculty to share some of the little things you can do for your program to yield big results. This collaborative session takes advantage of the decades of annual giving experience represented by the faculty and touches on topics relevant to small schools, big schools, public, private, independent schools and even non-profit organizations. Think of this as the punch list of what to do now to show immediate ROI
10:15 – 10:30 Coffee Break
10:30 – 11:45 Elective Sessions (choose one):
Weathering the Waves: All things Phonathon Once an anchor for many annual giving programs, call centers are facing turbulent tides. Is it ‘program overboard,’ or can we ‘right the ship’? It depends. But how do you know whether phonathon is still right for your institution? Or what if you plan to weather the storm, but you’re looking for a few more buoys? This session is for you.
We will engage in a candid discussion about all things phonathon. Starting from the dock by reviewing the basic techniques, we’ll venture out to discuss and tackle the storms we’ve faced along the way. Then we’ll explore deeper waters with emerging trends and new ideas. Come prepared to explore fresh ways to redefine call center success for the next century – or at least until the next major wave.
Open Me / Read Me: Getting Results from Direct Mail! In a busy world of multi-channel communications, direct mail continues to be a tried-and-true vehicle for Annual Giving. When competing for attention, what makes your mail piece stand out and get noticed. We will talk about what makes for a compelling mail piece and how different types of institutions, both big and small, can get big results from direct mail
Digital Marketing and Social Media The world has gone digital are you ready? In this session we will discuss how to integrate digital tools and social media into your annual giving plan. As we fight for the attention of our donors and constituents, it is important for annual giving programs to consider the multiple ways our communities interact with the organizations that they hold most dear. The creative use of digital marketing and social campaigns can help to fortify existing multi-channel marketing, solicitation and stewardship efforts.
11:45 AM – 1:30 PM Lunch on your own
1:30 – 2:30 Lightning Round with the Faculty: 10-minute mini presentations followed by Q&A
Quick appeal checklist
Top 10 list for onboarding when working remotely
How to choose a vendor.
Excel formulas we love.
Wildcard: audience choice.
2:30 – 2:45 Refreshment Break
2:45 – 4:00 Electives (choose one):
How to Get Nerdy with Numbers: Basic Annual Giving Reporting The concept of a data-driven program can feel overwhelming, or like you need a background in statistics. Not very many of us bring that to the table, and yet data is the lifeblood of any annual giving program. We use it to report on results, to evaluate our success, to build our plans, and improve performance. In this session, we’ll talk about how to effectively track your key performance indicators for each channel, segment, and project. Learn how to use data to help manage your decision making and planning processes. Discover how to effectively report results internally and externally. And, because it’s fun, we’ll get nerdy with some equations (no math degree necessary).
Making the Most of Volunteer Partnerships This topic falls into the category of anything worthwhile is never easy! It is no secret that volunteers can extend our reach and influence peers. What’s more, research confirms repeatedly that when volunteers feel a sense of ownership and investment in results, their own giving increases significantly. Once you’ve determined the role(s) you need filled, then the fun begins -- identifying potential partners, enlisting each one thoughtfully, and setting them up for success takes planning, patience and follow through. And that’s just the start. How can we keep volunteers engaged and motivated? How do we do all of this with limited resources? Let’s use this time together to think about the big picture and get into the details. As the famous saying goes: If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.
Using Incentives for your Annual Giving Program
4:00 – 4:15 Stretch Break
4:15 – 5:30 Electives (choose one):
Affinity Group, Reunions and Stewardship Is your reunion program on repeat? Does your affinity group programming need an upgrade? Or, are the gatherings great, but recently you’ve notice a “disconnect” between the party and the purpose?
Participants in this interactive session will engage in brainstorming activities that generate fresh ideas to boost these vital programs. Take away tangible resources and templates that help build buy-in, set timelines, engage volunteers and do more with less. Then, explore techniques to integrate these programs in ways that help shape the engagement and giving lifecycle for participants.
Engaging and Soliciting Students and Young Alumni Elective Rerun We’re wrapping up day two, and maybe you’re wishing you could’ve spent time with Jake learning how to pilot a program, but you also wanted to hear from Alice on volunteer management. You’re in luck because we are giving you the power to pick the second elective rerun. We’ll post a list of options, and you’ll decide who presents twice.
5:30 PM Conference adjourns for the day Dinner on your own
8:00 – 9:00 AM Breakfast and Roundtable Discussions and Faculty Office Hours Join your peers for optional small group discussions during breakfast. Individuals who signed up for faculty one-on-one sessions will have their appointments during this time.
9:00 – 10:00 Lightning Round #2 with the Faculty: 10-minute mini presentations followed by Q&A
Time to say goodbye: how to break up with a volunteer.
How to stay informed
Finding creative inspiration in the most unlikely of places.
How to share what your boss needs to know when
Wildcard: audience choice.
10:15 – 11:30 The power, purpose, and future of annual giving In a philanthropic landscape that is increasingly crowded annual giving is the key to building a strong and healthy donor pipeline. In this session, we’ll wrap up the entire conference hitting on key points regarding stewardship, donor delight, metrics, segmentation, working smart, managing up, volunteerism, and the important of you. This feel-good session is sure to inspire and serves as a great capstone to the conference.
11:30 AM – Noon Final Faculty Q&A and Wrap Up All Faculty