I’m a Tom Peters fan, and have been since that day in 1982 when a graduate school professor assigned his new, best-selling book (In Search of Excellence) as required reading. I’ve since read all his books, disagreed with several, listened to him speak (and rant) in person and on cassette tape and subscribed to his weekly email blast.
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Ohio Gives, Philanthropy Ohio’s annual giving report, details how Ohioans, foundations and more give and what causes they support. The latest data indicates that overall giving is up 18 percent over the previous year, reaching $7.8 billion.
In The Spotlight
Brian Frederick is the president/CEO of the Community Foundation of Lorain County and through his work with the Center for Rural Entrepreneurship, has become an expert in the area of Community Development Philanthropy. Philanthropy Ohio recently interviewed Brian to share his experience executing a Market Opportunity Analysis and what the community foundation learned.
How do you plan to change your strategy after looking at your donor data through a geographic lens?
We know our traditional donor base pretty well after 35 years, but these data are providing better insights into a segment of our population that is newer to Lorain County and frankly not as well known to us. We’re using this increased understanding to both target and filter our marketing and messaging to specific geographic areas in the county. It is helping us determine what we attend, what we sponsor, and how we spend our time. We will continue to make the Community Foundation of Lorain County accessible to everyone, but we’ll tweak our strategy to make sure that populations with the capacity to give big know our impact and what we can offer.
What did you find surprising?
The data uncovered a couple of communities with much higher potential for giving back than we had estimated using only census data. The research also illustrates the amazing diversity of our donors, their interests and the complex implications for marketing, communications and giving options. We thought we knew our community well and we were surprised. I would guess that might be the case for any community foundation. This is a great opportunity to test our understanding of our donors and learn more about the community we serve.
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Last week, Ohio philanthropy lost a passionate voice with the death of Mike Shinn.