Nonprofits Compete and Collaborate for Funds
Posted by Allison Fine on December 14, 2009
However, at other times I have written about the cannibalistic effect of nonprofit organizations competing with one another for funds. And others, like Peter Dietz, have written compellingly about power of social media to support collaboration that is mutually beneficial rather than competitions that are a zero-sum game.
So, A. Fine, they asked, which is it: competitions or collaboration?
The contest are important because: 1. The contest deadlines and matching grants create a sense of urgency that small dollar donors can respond to in great numbers; 2. Organizations are competing less with other organizations and more within themselves to spur their own networks to action; 3. Being successful in these competitions requires organizations to work in open and connected ways that are counter-intuitive for organizations that view fundraising only through a competitive lens.
From the America’s Giving Challenge Assessment report that Beth and I wrote for The Case Foundation, we found that many organizations used the challenge as an opportunity to collaborate. Two organizations working on the same cause or in the same issue area often joined forces for the Giving Challenge. What these organizations knew intuitively was that bringing old proprietary attitudes and actions to these competitions would not serve their organizations well during competitions. This is particularly true since success in fundraising efforts using social media hinge on friends reaching out to friends to create a viral effect. Trying to look “unique” or increase “market share” are counter productive in contests where winners built momentum based on the trust and relationships that they built with their online networks.
Hope that clears up any confusion about competition and collaboration.
This entry was posted on December 14, 2009 at 11:42 am and is filed under Social Media. Tagged: america's giving challenge, Beth, Chase Facebook Challenge, collaboration, competition, Peter Dietz. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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