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2024 Creative Day

Wednesday, May 22, 2024 (9:00 AM - 4:30 PM) (EDT)


Creative Day 2024: The same Creative Day you love in a brand new format. 

Join us on May 22 for a full day of in-person networking and learning. We are offering four outstanding sessions and, everyone’s favorite, roundtables where you get to talk directly with your colleagues.

New this year! You don’t have to be in DC to enjoy Creative Day. The first two sessions of the day will be streamed for our digital audience. Join for the morning live streamed program or come in person for the full day and immerse yourself in the experience.

You won’t want to miss this year’s speakers from organizations on the cutting-edge of direct response fundraising – including the Human Rights Campaign, Nature Conservancy, Women for Women International, and more!

We’ll start the morning with Engaging Creative that Got Results – where you’ll see dozens of winning campaigns that actually worked. And a few that didn’t. We’ll also talk AI in Fundraising, how to develop policies for your organization and how to use AI ethically in copy and design.

Full day attendees will have two chances to join a roundtable discussion – choose from great topics including:

  • Innovative (and Affordable) Packages
  • What’s Working in Digital Creative
  • Building a Great Fundraising Offer
  • Messaging for special audiences: Mid-level
  • Messaging for special audiences: Planned Giving
  • Messaging for special audiences: Sustainers/Monthly Giving

After lunch, we’ll have a conversation about ethical creative – what it means and how it is changing the fundraising landscape. And we’ll end the day with 15 Best Practices for Multi-Channel Direct Marketing  where you will get a quick refresher on best practices and see some more great creative and design.

We’ve jam packed this day with so many ideas – you won’t know where to start first when you get back to your office. Don’t miss this chance to feel inspired again about your fundraising creative. Sign up today. And bring a friend!

PLUS: Get Expert Feedback – Only at DMAW Creative Day 2024!

When you attend DMAW Creative Day, you'll have the chance to present your own creative work to a seasoned expert. Whether it's your direct mail appeal, email campaign, multi-channel masterpiece, or innovative ad, bring a sample to the event. Within just one week, you'll receive personalized feedback, fresh ideas, and invaluable suggestions tailored to your project.

Imagine the possibilities! Your creativity meets expert guidance, propelling your work to the next level of innovation and impact. Don't miss this opportunity! Register today to attend!

Enjoy the full day on site with networking, lunch and all the sessions! Not in DC? Choose the digital only option for the two morning sessions only.


9:00 - 9:30 amRegistration & Continental Breakfast

9:30 - 9:45 amWelcome and Opening Remarks

Speakers: Kathy Swayze, President & Creative Director, Impact Communications; Leigh Corrigan-Owens, Creative Director, Mal Warwick Donordigital

9:45 - 10:45 amEngaging Creative That Got Results
*** Virtual Option ***Speakers: Robin Perry, Vice President Design & Corporate Marketing, Lautman Maska Neill & Co.; Caitlin Toynbee, Deputy Director, Membership, Human Rights Campaign

Engaging Creative That Got Results will showcase over 40 examples of direct-response creative that ACTUALLY got results – from Acquisition to Planned Giving, and everything in between. Join us for this jam-packed session – you are sure to find a wealth of ideas worth considering for your next fundraising campaign (in the mailbox or in the inbox)!

Learning objectives:
  • Improve results through creative design techniques
  • Get inspiration for copy techniques
  • Come away with testing ideas for your next fundraising campaign

10:45 - 11:00 amRefresh & Connect Break

11:00 am - 12:00 pmEthical Use of AI in Fundraising Creative
*** Virtual Option ***Speakers: Leigh Corrigan-Owens, Creative Director, Mal Warwick Donordigital; Erica O'Brien, Principal/Owner, Fuse Fundraising

Are you overwhelmed by AI technology's endless possibilities and challenges to your fundraising creative? Do you wish you better understood its impact and had more time to explore its potential? Are you worried that you should have written your AI policies months ago?

If so, join us for an engaging and informative session at Creative Day 2024 that will help you navigate the use of AI in your creative development. Discover how to harness AI's power while addressing ethical concerns and identifying new opportunities. You'll leave with a clear, actionable plan to draft and implement practical AI guidelines. 

Don't miss this chance to transfer your approach to fundraising creative with the latest insights and practical strategies. Sign up now to secure your spot!

12:00 - 1:00 pmNetworking & Lunch

1:00 - 2:15 pmChoose Your Topics: Engage in Two 30-Minute Roundtable Conversations

Moderator: Kelly Potchak, Associate Creative Director, Copy, Moore Digital
  • Innovative Packaging – Jeff Thomas, Director Business Development, RWT; Cindy Barham, Vice President, Client Services, RWT; Melissa IannittoSenior Production Manager, PMG
  • What’s Working in Digital Creative? Dana Kunkel, Design Director, Lautman Maska Neill & Co.
  • Constructing a Great Fundraising Offer – Kathy Swayze, President & Creative Director, Impact Communications
  • Messaging/Creative for Special Audience:
        a.  Mid-Level – Nicole Palardy, Director of Mid-Level Giving, Jane Goodall Institute USA
        b.  Planned Giving – Beth Fiencke, Director, Gift Planning Strategy & Stewardship, The Nature Conservancy
        c.  Sustainers – Caitlin Toynbee, Deputy Director, Membership, Human Rights Campaign

2:15 - 3:15 pmEthical Creative: The Fine Line Between Creativity and Respect

Speakers: Mary Abeson, Marketing Officer, Women for Women International; Melanie Smith, Senior Account Executive, MWD Agency

In this session, you will hear from speakers who offer experience in the local, national and global fundraising space. Mary Abeson of Women for Women International will speak to her organization’s commitment to centering and uplifting the communities they serve by presenting their stories with strength and dignity through intentional imagery and copy. Melanie Smith, MWD will discuss her agency's partnership with Women for Women and how other MWD clients are incorporating strength-based messaging and community-centric fundraising principles into their campaigns. And why creative curiosity and healthy arguments are part of the process.

Learning objectives:

  • How to be community centric and still use the word “you”.
  • Tips for changing your mindset to working “with” those you serve rather than “for” them.
  • Resources you need to facilitate ethical creative with your staff and consulting partners.

3:15 - 3:30 pmRefresh & Connect Break

3:30 - 4:30 pm15 Best Practices for Multi-Channel Direct Marketing

Speakers: Kara Eberle, Director, Content & Integrated Marketing, Corus International/Lutheran World Relief; Elle Lamboy, Senior Copywriter, Moore, CDR Division

Get to the core of brilliant creative! A dynamic show-and-tell led by top creative minds, 15 Best Practices for Successful Multi-Channel Direct Marketing will feature real-world examples of standout creative and the tests that took it to the next level. From engaging storytelling to transactional approaches, see proven best practices across channels, as well as the techniques that have challenged (and beat) the status quo. Whether you're a seasoned direct marketer looking to give your tried-and-true creative a tune-up, or a newcomer exploring the basics of creative that captures donors' attention, this fast-paced session will leave you energized and inspired to put creative practices to the test.

  • Take a deep dive into applying donor research to a comprehensive messaging strategy.
  • See successful tactics for standout email, digital ad, SMS, and direct mail creative that dazzles and delivers results.
  • Gain insight into how to choose the right content for the right channel to engage prospects and donors.
  • Discover how effective holistic approaches to copy and design that capture and increase conversations.

4:30 - 4:35 pmClosing Remarks & Thank You







Media Release: By registering, you grant the Direct Marketing Association of Washington permission to photograph, video/audio record, and use your image and likeness in DMAW publications, promotions, and other media. You understand that DMAW has exclusive rights to these visual and audio recordings.

Photographs, videos, and recordings may be taken at the event for use on the DMAW website, print collateral, press, future marketing materials, and social media. By attending this event, you consent to DMAW photographing, taking video, and using your image and likeness.

If you prefer not to have your information shared, please opt out by submitting a written request to

1800 Massachusetts Avenue, NW 2nd Floor
Washington, DC 20036 United States
Event Contact
Angelica Sullivan
(703) 689-3629
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Wednesday, May 22, 2024 (9:00 AM - 4:30 PM) (EDT)
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