News from Cass Business School

The power of nostalgia

Friday, 6 March, 2009

John Ford, a leading international expert in relationship marketing and fundraising and currently Visiting Professor of Marketing at Cass Business School, presented his research on the power of nostalgia to stimulate charitable giving at a joint CPAG/ Institute of Fundraising seminar on 25th February.

Drawing on research on personal nostalgia in marketing consumer goods, Professor Ford said that particularly in a recession, donors need to get on charities' priority lists: charities need to find the individual triggers which drive emotional connections, and personal nostalgia can provide a strong link.

He argued that enhancing emotional benefits to the giver drives commitment to a charity. Nostalgia can generate a sense of security and continuity.

An expert on relationship fundraising, Professor Ford located charitable commitment firmly within donor trust in a charity. Existing research shows that professional relationship management is a necessity, not a luxury.

Professor Cathy Pharoah, Co-Director of the Cass's ESRC Centre for Philanthropy and Charitable Giving says Professor Ford's authoritative research will help fundraisers use the concept of nostalgia effectively, through highlighting the individual and diverse nature of donor experience. For university development officers, reaching out to alumni will not work if it mainly prompts recall of failed grades.
Find out more about Cass's ESRC Centre for Philanthropy and Charitable Giving

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Professor John Ford

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