alo365's blog

Sharing thoughts & experiences

A few lovely people that I have met, thanks to Twitter!


Why am I on Twitter?

I get asked this question so often…

I am on Twitter for a number of reasons. Instead of listing them out, which would be a tad boring & factual, I thought that I would share a bit about a few people that I have met in 2010 as a direct result of being on Twitter.

The first person that I ever met through Twitter was Rachel Beer @rachelbeer. It was lovely to finally meet the person behind the avatar. Our meeting was very brief, so I do hope the next time we meet we get to have a proper chat. She is just as lovely in person as she is on Twitter. Always willing to share her thoughts & feedback, and also helped me out with my cousins Xmas gifts this year! Bringing the NFP Tweetup to life, she certainly knows her stuff and is a true social media guru.

Paul De Gregorio @Pauldegregorio was the next person that I met up with several months ago, at his offices in Old Street. I was blown away by our conversation and his love of the sector. He is filled with so many ideas that I cannot wait to chat further about. A man who is extremely focused, with vast experience in telephone fundraising. On a new venture, that I wish him all the very best on. I am thrilled to be working with him on a project in the New Year!

Craig Linton @Frdetective was another person that I am extremely happy to have met. I had been following him on twitter for a few months, we had chatted (online) about fundraising, he had kindly given me some info & ideas on legacies. A few weeks later, he said to me that he had gotten the job as the New Head of Fundraising at the GLFB (a charity client that I had been working with for several years!) It shows you what a small world it really is… Within the next couple weeks, we had arranged a meeting (to chat about the current campaign), went out for a drink after and following this – I had found my first volunteering opportunity! I worked at the GLFB one day a week for three months, and I loved every minute! It made my decision to start my Msc in Charity Fundraising & Marketing something that I worked even harder towards. I share Craig’s vision on fundraising and what he wants to achieve at the GLFB. This man is truly inspirational and is out to make a difference in every charity that he works for. He is so enthusiastic & passionate about what he does – it was a privilege to work with him!

Anna Walsh @annarwalsh Now here is one extremely insightful, hard working & shrewd lady! 100% on the ball and passionate about fundraising & communication… I actually first met Anna a few years ago at her leaving party at Sense, through one of the guys that I used to work with. However, only pleasantries, and I have a feeling that I might have been gate crashing, but hey! (Hope that you didn’t mind Anna). Anyway, we connected through Twitter a couple of years later and she has been an absolute gem! I am so thrilled to have met up with her again. She is another person who I am very happy to have worked with, and hope to again in the future.

Nausheen Qureshi @POPNQ is a force to be reckoned with! I am not sure how she does it really (a question that I have actually asked her)… She has founded a charity, a skin care line & who knows what else will be next. Constantly working & on the go with new events, initiatives & ideas to raise money for Play Our Part – a charity who helps to support people who are affected by HIV/AIDS living in Africa. And also happens to have a fabulous accent to match her personality.

John Lepp @Johnlepp I believe that most people know and have chatted to this man. He is one that will probably take me awhile to meet up with in person, but one that I am more than happy to Skype & chat on twitter with! He is another person who I find extremely insightful and creative, with a vast knowledge of fundraising & helping charities to communicate more effectively with their supporters. An agent of good which I hope to work with in the not too distant future.

Recently I have started chatting to a very lovely lady who is extremely inspirational! Not sure if you know Hazel @CHD_UK. She is currently teaching in Spain & studying Child Psychology. Now here is a lady that I hope to meet up with when she comes back to the UK in September. A selfless, kind & hardworking individual who is helping to raise awareness of Congenital Heart Defects, as well as living with one herself.

Okay, so there you have it – here are just some of the lovely people that I have met thanks to being on Twitter. As I’m sure that you can tell, I am very much pro Twitter and always will be.

I look forward to connecting & meeting up with many more twitteries in 2011.

Leave a comment »

A New Year – A New Post – A New Beginning

I have already heard quite a bit of happy news from different people and it’s only been one day into the New Year. It’s a lovely start & I hope that it is a sign of an amazing year to come.

Those who know me, know that 2010 was not the greatest of years. Not just for myself, but my family too. 2010 has been such a roller-coaster with the loss of family members, a health scare, and big changes in my life (all of which have happened in 2010). Previous years I have felt one or two major shifts and knocks, but never so many in such a short space in time. What is that saying used quite often, but that we all find comfort in from time-to-time – “What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger!”

We can never relive or get back the year that has just gone. So, we have to look forward and make 2011 the year of which to achieve new goals and seek out new adventures. I for one attempt to do just that!

Wishing you all a very Happy & Prosperous New Year.



What is Marketing & Who are our Customers?

What is marketing? I find myself asking this question again as I sit and wait in Bristol Temple Meads station for the next train back to London. This question has been on my mind since the very first lecture I sat in. Ask me why? It’s because I had literally just started my diploma and was presented with a due date for my first assignment (gulp).

Now perhaps I am being over eager blogging about this, but the word “marketing” seems to cause some controversy, as each person will of course have their own opinion on what marketing actually is and where it lies in their organisation.

So far, we have spoken about how marketing is all about our “customers” and meeting their needs, wants, demands & desires – all of which revolves around being marketing orientated.  Everyone that we exchange with (whether it be for a product or a service) are still classified as a customer. This means that everyone from our donors to our suppliers can be classified as a customer, and each of them need to be a part of our marketing plan. Now, I know that some might disagree with this. I did at first, because aren’t we paying our suppliers for the service/product we receive? But what if I said to you that your volunteers and staff are also your customers, how many of you would stop reading this?

To those who agree with me or those who simply want to know what I am on about – they ALL are your customers. Everyone that we interact with day to day are our customers. Why? Because everyone has an opinion, a choice and freedom to share with anyone they wish. They (volunteers) can choose to continue working within your organisation or not, they can recommend you to another beneficiary/charity/individual/media/etc or complain about you &/or your services. This is why it’s recommended that we have a clear marketing plan – for us to be able to identify who our customers are, how we can meet their needs & wants with the resources that we have, and aim to exceed them.

Now, not everyone reading this will have the same customers. Some may have volunteers and others may not or do not require any. Other bigger organisations need to look at the media as being a big customer because they can influence many people around the world with one article/news broadcast. It all depends on which organisation you work in and who your customers are.

Now, I know that I work for an agency and our customers are clear to me – they are every single charity out there, as each one of them could become one of our clients. Our customers (in no particular order) – UK based charities, Processing Bureaus, Suppliers, Media, Competitors, Staff & Members of the public.

I would really like to put this to the guru’s out there (well those who I think have done some really great work in the sector from the marketing angle) and hear what your thoughts are on marketing & what it means to you/your organisation? These folks include @rachelbeer @markyphillips @johnlepp @annarwalsh @frdetective @causeperfect.

Thanks to everyone who has read this. Please feel free to add your thoughts & opinions, all is welcome and it’s great to get feedback so that I can perhaps use this in my next assignment.