Donors Down on Giving for 2010
Posted by Allison Fine on May 26, 2010
Fenton Communications released a survey of individual donors this week. The results were sobering. Nearly two-thirds of survey respondents report they plan to either reduce their giving or keep it the same as last year. This is on top of already reduced giving levels for 2008 and 2009.
Particularly bad news is that the critical cohort of adults over 50 are planning to reduce their giving the most.
On the positive side, 80% of respondents think nonprofits in general on doing a good job. The following nonprofits are the top ten ranked as “extremely” or “very effective.”
1. (tie) American Diabetes Association
6. American Heart Association
1. (tie) Special Olympics
7. Susan G. Komen Foundation
3. American Red Cross
4. Habitat for Humanity
9. American Cancer Society
5. Make-A-Wish Foundation
10. Humane Society
In addition, Joycelyn Harmon, a national expert in online fundraising, says that most nonprofits are missing the board in terms of readying their websites to be attractive for donors (she uses saltier language, go and read it.)
I think and hope that these findings having a catalyzing effect on medium to small-sized nonprofit organization. If I were the Executive Director or Development Director (which, thank goodness, I’m not because they’re really, really hard jobs!) looking at these data, here is what I’d do:
- Move from content development to relationship development. We’ve moved from the Web 1.0 of online brochures to Web 2.0 content development to Web 3.0 relationship building. Take whatever resources I could find, staff, volunteers, anything and throw them into relationship building. Connecting with lots of people morphs into content development – but not the other way around. In order to make friends on Facebook and Twitter, you have to tell authentic stories and share the stories of other people. Link your blog to anyone else blogging about my topic, celebrate their efforts, retweet them. Show the world that you’re interested in connecting with people in meaningful ways about your issue not treating everyone on the outside like ATM machines.
- Find a friend. Senior managers need to become facile with social media themselves and be central to the relationship building of their organizations. Find someone who is facile with social media and make them your mentor. This is a great job for a young person. Carve out an hour a week to practice with them. Use the tools yourself, connect with people, model good relationship building practices for others in your organization.
- Start to experiment with ways to turn those friends, particularly the younger ones, into funders. It is imperative to build a strong, wide, resilient base of supporters to replace the old direct mail donor bases. Don’t worry that the average gifts are low or that they come and go, keep talking to your online friends and start to experiment to find out what issues spur them to give or do something.
What would you do?
This entry was posted on May 26, 2010 at 9:51 am and is filed under Social Media. Tagged: Fenton Communications, Jocelyn Harmon. 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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