Welcome to Up Insights!

Today, I am proud to launch Up Insights.

This is a blog dedicated to fundraisers and marketers just like you! We will be bringing you weekly fundraising and marketing insights to help your charity and nonprofit raise more money efficiently and effectively. 

Since 2016 when we launched Up Fundraising we have talked directly to thousands of individual donors across North America and we began to do 2 critical things: 

Listen to what not just what individuals who signed up as monthly donors were saying but also, 

Listen to why they weren’t interested in becoming a monthly donor.

As the Founder of Up Fundraising, and being a successful entrepreneur I have been fortunate to create some wealth over the past number of years. I have also always believed in building a purpose driven business, and in expanding notions of philanthropy. 


Two of the largest wealth creators are also the biggest philanthropists. Richard Branson, one of the most recognized entrepreneurs globally, operating over 200 companies through Virgin.  He launched Virgin Unite and Virgin Green, both charitable arms of Virgin that draws upon the resources to establish projects and campaigns that empower budding social entrepreneurs. Bill Gates is another household name. He and his wife, launched the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in 2000. This foundation is the largest private foundation in the world holding $50.7 billion in assets. 


These are two extreme examples of high net worth individuals directing a significant portion of their wealth towards philanthropic activities through their foundations.


Here is the challenge I see facing the current and future of philanthropy. 


It is not just about raising money from high net worth donors, but critically nurturing donors when they are giving you a little. 

It is about helping them to really “get the big picture”, understand where their donations are being applied and what impact it is having. 


Building philanthropy does not start with role modeling those who have created wealth by initially acquiring, nurturing, creating regular, committed donors.   

I have listed below some of my thoughts on how to better build sustainable major gift campaigns. 


Adopt an experiential approach to engaging your donors at the highest level. 

It is important that donors be made to feel that their contributions are important and appreciated. We get this. It is why we at Up have expanded what we do to help charities reach their donors through different and unique journeys to help ensure that their major gifts are making a difference and are greatly appreciated.


Be reflective and self-aware. 

Consider how each of your donors is currently being managed and taken care of? How effective is your approach? Do these donors make once-off contributions, or are they repeat contributors? How often do you invite these donors to see the results of the work?  When working with your mid or high level donors, I believe strongly that relationship building between high/senior level management at your non-profit with all of your high-net worth donors must take place before any request for funds is made.  


Connecting face to face is a must.

Having the CEO build a strong personal relationship with the major donors is extremely important and must be an area of focus.  This relationship needs to build throughout the duration of the donor’s existence. It’s not just at the time of raising funds, but actively throughout the calendar year. Inviting them to special events and making one/one calls and messages are keys to making the donor feel appreciated.  This simply results in a satisfied donor and likely one that will pass the message along to their network of whom they may also provide some philanthropy towards the cause. 

Over the years I have provided some of my net worth towards great causes and now with the addition of my Up-Fundraising business I have learned a great deal around how to better optimize major donors and those who donate monthly. I strongly believe that creating a culture of nurture is perhaps the least understood of the priorities among charitable organizations with too much focus placed on bringing in the funds. 


“…creating a culture of nurture is perhaps the least understood of the priorities among charitable organizations…”

As part of this we have recently launched our Integrated Fundraising division; which supports donor engagement at all levels. We break down a number of different data points that we gain from our face to face fundraisers and provide this insight towards our campaigns that help build sustainable campaigns that provide increases in donors over time and higher donor retention. 

Launching Up-Fundraising has been one of the best decisions I have made to date and continuing on this path to helping charities raise funds and providing our culture of nurturing is something I am very passionate about.

All of us at Up Fundraising strongly believe that when you align yourself with socially-minded businesses and enterprises, growth and success are inevitable, for you and us.

We have proudly made it on to the 2019 Growth 500 list in Canada.

We are very excited about our future together. 

If you want to learn more about what we are doing, give us a call 1-888-788-5171 and ask for Aspa or Niduk.

– Neil Spivack, Chairman


Coming up next week, The #1 (Secret) Fear Most Fundraiser Have. To subscribe, click here

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