Marketing and Conference Support

Marketing and Conference Support
Council on Foundations logo on a blue background


McKinley began a long-term engagement with the Council on Foundations (Council) in 2009 to provide marketing support for the 2010 Family Philanthropy Conference. At the beginning of the engagement, the Council had few resources and limited tracking of exhibitors and revenue.

For three consecutive years, McKinley developed and implemented conference marketing plans focusing on exhibitors and attendees and supported the conferences, a primary revenue source, on an ongoing basis. McKinley established a framework and applied best practices for managing exhibitors and sponsors, which includes relationship management, communications, sales and customer service. Prior to McKinley’s engagement, the Council had no historical records of its efforts. Now they have one centralized system to keep track of inquiries, prospects, invoices, materials, ads, logos and agreements.


With an effective system in place, McKinley’s focus shifted to outreach and relationship building with exhibitors, sponsors and the Council staff. Having served as liaison between the Council and exhibitors, McKinley’s customer service expertise improved the experience for the exhibitors and professionalized exhibitor management. The Council’s Marketing and Meeting staff were able to focus on the other demands of their positions. McKinley’s overall streamlined approach to marketing and meeting activities created greater confidence, collaboration and communications between Council departments and, as a result, increased revenue and enhanced the exhibitor experience.

During a transitional time at the Council, McKinley stepped in and created the foundation of an expandable program, increasing exhibitor and sponsorship revenue by 60% for our Family Philanthropy Conference and nearly 30% for our Fall Conference for Community Foundations. McKinley staff are not considered consultants by the Council, but valued members of my team, who have integrated into the fabric of the organization. I don’t know how we could have exceeded our revenue goals without them!”

-Lya W. Britt

Former Director of Marketing Services