CharityComms 2020

Due to a Microsoft Outlook error – it helpfully sent the oft-emailed Ben Matthews to my junk mail folder to get lost amidst pornspam – I was too late to get my five themes for the next decade into his CharityComms 2020 project (all the more embarrassing as I am on the board of CharityComms…).

Next time, we’ll use Twitter / gmail / GoogleWave / anything but my work Outlook…

Anyway, I’m now in there (slide 5), and you can view the whole thing below:

I thought I’d list them here too. I like to think they are a mix of healthy realism with an optimistic edge…

Ideas about the next decade of charity communications.

  • Major national charities as we know them will not exist in the same form – the democratisation of brand, the crowdsourcing of effort, and devolution to the micro-local, will negate the need for 20th century models of ‘charity’.
  • The internet will be radically different – we will have amorphous and ubiquitous media that will make today’s “social media” look like Pong. Charities will harness microvolunteering, as it is now, seamlessly – and the Big Society (but not as the Coalition quite envisage it) will be interwoven into the fabric of our lives.
  • A wave of scalps. There will be real tests – and fallout – for reputation managers and communicators, as charities and NGOs’ expenses and administration costs are wrung through the media – akin to MPs in the UK. There will be savage accountability and Government will step into the Charities Commission’s territory to enforce stricter transparency and communication.
  • Co-production will finally be widely understood and adopted. Where we have seen pockets of user-led participation in the third sector, it will be viewed as primitive in the future to not have service-users involved in every stage of conception, planning, comms, and delivery. This will affect communications and marketing that relies on expressing ‘pity’ and paternalism today.
  • As a product of both heightened transparency and co-production, charities will use the cloud increasingly and service provision will be delivered with even less requirement for bricks and mortar buildings. Fundraising will be largely crowdsourced, with less ‘ownership’ from grant-providers and major donors.
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