Open Fundraising


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Back in the day, we hired people constantly. Every week or so a shiny new desk would appear, closely followed by a shiny new laptop and a shiny new person. But since we hit ‘just right’ a year or so ago, it just doesn’t happen like that.


So if you’re an Account Manager or a Junior Writer with a hankering to change the world with the best ideas, clients and colleagues, this is a rare chance.


You’ll get to work in Shoreditch (almost). The beer is free (most of the time). And the opportunity to be part of big, scary, game-changing charity campaigns comes as standard.


So if you know the difference between advertising and fundraising, can identify a full-bleed DL at 20 paces and get all excited about what charities can do with mobile phones, email your CV to and we’ll send you a full job description.



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We talk a lot about mobile here at Open, and for good reason. When there are more mobile phones than humans in the world, and recent research suggesting that the average user checks theirs over a 100 times a day, it really can’t be ignored.


It’s opened up a whole host of opportunities for our sector – giving donors a way to engage with charities instantly. What really excites me is how we can harness the mobile phone to do even more.


We’ve just developed a new regular giving product for the Canal & River Trust, called ‘Waterside Watch’. Targeted at families (it’s a perfect Christmas gift for the kids) and animal lovers, it’s an exciting new way to help preserve and protect 2,000 miles of UK waterways that many animals call home. A key part of this product is that whilst the payment method is traditional the stewardship is delivered in an innovative way direct to your phone.


We built an SMS broadcast platform that allows us to send the stewardship content, straight to mobiles. It’s supported with monthly emails and tumblr where all of our beautiful images, videos and sound bites are hosted.


So, not only do we deliver a product to our donors in a way that’s best for them, but we can easily measure engagement levels and control the vital welcome journey messaging in a cost-effective and efficient way.


With lots of lovely waterside animal pictures, and a way to protect their home – here’s another reason to check your phone.



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This weekend was spent trying to sort out, and worrying about, problems with my rented flat. On Sunday morning (after little sleep) I remembered Shelter’s housing helpline. It was open and free to call, even from a mobile. During my twenty minute conversation, not only was I given practical advice but also the emotional reassurance I needed to clear my mind and devise a plan of action.


As a fundraiser, it took me back to the many conversations I’ve had with charities who refuse to ask for money from their service users. In some cases this is understandable but, in my opinion, rarely as a blanket rule. Often the information and services offered by charities is better than anything a private or public organisation could provide. This ranges from health information for people and their families diagnosed with an illness, to lunch clubs for lonely older people, to the practical and legal guidance that Shelter offered me.


Myself and other ‘beneficiaries’ are the people who really understand what the charity can offer. We’re the most grateful for their services and the ones who so often would like to say thank you. We understand that running these services cost money and that there will be other people in the future, like us, who need them. Yes, we could go online and find the donation page, but why not contact us for a follow up and include an ask?


I’m watching this space to see whether or not this will come from Shelter…




Photo borrowed from Joshua Mayer