Giving USA, an annual publication that reports the sources and uses of charitable gifts in the United States, released some good news this year: Overall, charitable giving in 2012 was up 3.5% over 2011. This is especially good news for nonprofits that have a well-rounded plan to raise funds through multiple channels. But keep in mind that donations from individuals make up the largest piece of the giving pie: 72%.
Image credit: Whitney Bond/ Little Leopard Book
How is your organization’s “giving pie” sliced? Do you have a steady stream of individual gifts coming in the door every year?
There are two keys to getting more individual gifts online:
1. You must make it easy for donors to give.
Make giving a snap online: Giving online giving is growing faster than any other method of donating. But simply having the option to donate online isn’t enough: Donors expect online giving to be easy. A donor should be able to Google the name of your organization, click on your website, and find your donation button in 2 seconds or less. Is it easy for a newbie to give through your organization’s website? Try making it even easier.
Make it easier to say yes: People are more likely to give when the request comes from someone they know, especially if it’s a trusted peer. The key here is quantity. Social fundraising works best when an enthusiastic team works together to rally their networks to raise a large sum of money. Introduce a few outgoing, social, creative volunteers to a peer-to-peer fundraising tool like Crowdrise and see how you can use the power of peer networks to introduce new donors to your cause.
2. You have to meet donors where they are.
On social media: People are talking about your cause on social media. Is your organization part of the discussion? Reach out to your advocates and encourage the conversation. Consider recruiting new donors on social media and make it easy for current donors to share your message with the world.
Via mobile: Fifty-six percent of adults in the United States own a smartphone. Do you know what your organization’s website or emails look like on a smart phone? To keep up with your donors’ habits, you absolutely have to give them a good experience via mobile. For more on mobile giving, download Network for Good’s free eGuide.