Fundraising Best Practices in the Digital Age


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Richard Dietz, Founder, Nonprofit R+D

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Fundraising Best Practices in the Digital Age

  1. 1. Fundraising Best Practices in the Digital AgeRichard Dietz 1 of 55
  2. 2. Richard Dietz Richard has spent the last 20 years working both in and with a wide variety of nonprofit, political, and government organizations, as well as technology companies focused on the nonprofit sector, including Sage Nonprofit, Convio and KIMBIA. Richard holds a M.S.W. from the University of California at Berkeley as well as a B.A. in Political Science from UCLA. Fundraising Best Practices 2 of in the Digital Age
  3. 3. Nonprofit R+D is dedicated to helping emerging and growing nonprofits fully utilize technology and the web to support their missions through training, best practices, and support. Our definition of success is simple – we teach you how to use technology to effectively further your organization’s mission and then you do it. We want to work ourselves out of a job! Think of it as the “teach a man to fish” model applied to technology use by nonprofit organizations. Fundraising Best Practices 3 of in the Digital Age
  4. 4. Agenda 1. Soap Box 2. Overview 3. Fundraising Strategies 1. Storytelling 2. Multi-channel 3. Email Marketing 4. Video 5. Mobile Fundraising Best Practices 4 of in the Digital Age
  5. 5. Our Goals Today • Get you thinking about some new ways to improve your online fundraising efforts. • Get you to take action and test out some new ideas ASAP • No campaign is ever perfect or “ready” • Only way to improve is to get something out there and test • Pick one or two ideas and add them to your campaigns. Fundraising Best Practices 5 of in the Digital Age
  6. 6. Soap Box Fundraising Best Practices 6 of in the Digital Age
  7. 7. Don’t Panic There is help out there Fundraising Best Practices 7 of in the Digital Age
  8. 8. What you talkin’ about Willis? SaaS, CRM, CMS ROI, API, wysiwyg Open-Source Fundraising Platform Blah, Blah, Blah Fundraising Best Practices 8 of in the Digital Age
  9. 9. Experts have all the answers… No, not really There are “best practices,” but you must test in your organization Testing is the key, • Much easier to do online • If it works, do more. • If not, try something else. Fundraising Best Practices 9 of in the Digital Age
  10. 10. The Latest and Greatest… Many folks like to focus on the latest and greatest tools and techniques (Shiny Object Syndrome) At Nonprofit R+D, we first focus on the basics and building a solid foundation It may not be as cool or exciting initially • But you will raise more money in the long run Fundraising Best Practices 10 of in the Digital Age
  11. 11. Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Fundraising Best Practices 11 of in the Digital Age
  12. 12. Online Hierarchy of Needs Fundraising Best Practices 12 of in the Digital Age
  13. 13. “I already know this…” We all have enough information right now to raise more money online. The key is what have you DONE with the information. Just take one or two things from the presentation today and Take Action Fundraising Best Practices 13 of in the Digital Age
  14. 14. Off Soap Box Fundraising Best Practices 14 of in the Digital Age
  15. 15. Overview of Online Fundraising Fundraising Best Practices 15 of in the Digital Age
  16. 16. What is Online Fundraising? Online Fundraising is NOT a Donate Button We see Online Fundraising as: a coordinated, multi-faceted process of soliciting donations using online tools, including but not limited to websites, email, SEO, video, social media, mobile, etc. Fundraising Best Practices 16 of in the Digital Age
  17. 17. Why Online Fundraising?• Online giving is the fastest growing channel and is growing fastest for smallorganizations• 75%+ of donations are still coming from individuals• 65% said they will make an online gift this year » Young donors (86%), 35 – 64 year old (68%), Over 65 year old (53%)• Direct mail donors – 29% made their gift online• 93% of Millennials gave to nonprofits in 2010 – 21% gave $1,000 or more• 26% who gave via mail said they were going to give LESS this way in 2011• 69% prefer electronic over print communication Fundraising Best Practices 17 of in the Digital Age
  18. 18. Online Fundraising Strategies Fundraising Best Practices 18 of in the Digital Age
  19. 19. Some Next Level Strategies We still recommend focusing on the basics first, but after that you can experiment with these: 1. Storytelling 2. Integrating Channels 3. Email Marketing 4. Video 5. Mobile Fundraising Best Practices 19 of in the Digital Age
  20. 20. 1. Storytelling Fundraising Best Practices 20 of in the Digital Age
  21. 21. Why Storytelling Stories are compelling.. Donation pages are not People give to People (animals too) • Individual stories are more effective • Late night infomercials • Childhood Hunger vs. four-year old Marie Fundraising Best Practices 21 of in the Digital Age
  22. 22. Why Storytelling Emotion >> Rationality • Dan Ariely – Predictably Irrational • Simon Sinek: How great leaders inspire action (The Why) • Buy based on emotion / Rationalize it later with facts • Focus on emotion first, • then give them the reasons why it was a good decision What donors want to hear about: • Organizational Impact (80%) • Success Stories (74%) • More details about the organization (71%) • Info on financial accountability (43%) Community Philanthropy 2.0 survey Fundraising Best Practices 22 of in the Digital Age
  23. 23. Storytelling Inspire supporters with passion • Always write your own content • You know your org the best and the passion will come out Create emails and campaigns with “stories” in mind • Individual stories • Across emails.. The Cliffhanger • Multichannel Fundraising Best Practices 23 of in the Digital Age
  24. 24. 2. Integrate Channels (Multi-channel Marketing) Fundraising Best Practices 24 of in the Digital Age
  25. 25. Multichannel Marketing Marketing simultaneously across multiple channels – print, web, tv, radio, phone, mobile, events, etc. 2012 eNonprofit Benchmark Study • Multichannel fundraising increased quantity of online donations by 19% ( Fundraising Best Practices 25 of in the Digital Age
  26. 26. Multichannel Marketing Keys for Multichannel Marketing • Online should enhance and compliment your offline (& vice versa) • Don’t think of them as separate items • Coordinate both into a cohesive “conversation” • Integrate the story across your channels • Keep the conversation going in their head • Multi-Part as well • Ask supporters for their preference Fundraising Best Practices 26 of in the Digital Age
  27. 27. Offline Better? Blackbaud 2011 Multichannel Fundraising Report • Online acquired donors more valuable.. • IF they are converted to offline donors • Online donors tend to be “one-hit wonders” • Can that really be true? • Data from 28 large orgs and had well developed direct mail • How does the org treat online donors? • Same time and effort online as offline? • Kivi Leroux Miller – Great article talking more about this Fundraising Best Practices 27 of in the Digital Age
  28. 28. Event Fundraising The 890% Difference • Event fundraising vs. Online donation forms • Another way to engage and stand out • In-person meets increase sense of community and connection • Great way to get businesses on board • More likely to “sponsor” events (Win – Win) • Tie events into other campaigns and the story Fundraising Best Practices 28 of in the Digital Age
  29. 29. 3. Email Marketing Fundraising Best Practices 29 of in the Digital Age
  30. 30. Email is Still #1 Many new “tools” in the press Email still takes the prize Fundraising Best Practices 30 of in the Digital Age
  31. 31. Email Marketing Email is still the most effective method • 69% prefer electronic over print communication • 2011 Cygnus Donor Survey Email fits perfectly into Storytelling Relatively inexpensive Start capturing emails now! • Grab them everywhere you can…. But don’t spam Fundraising Best Practices 31 of in the Digital Age
  32. 32. E-Newsletters Don’t Work Monthly newsletters no longer work • Lost in the inbox • Too much content • Its about great engaging content • Need to tell stories What Supporters want to hear about • Organizational Impact (80%) • Success Stories (74%) • More details about the organization (71%) • Info on financial accountability (43%) Community Philanthropy 2.0 survey Fundraising Best Practices 32 of in the Digital Age
  33. 33. Email Best Practices Relevant and enticing subject lines • Literacy eNews – January 2011, OR 5 tips to create a life long reader Easy to digest • Scanability • Table of contents, highlight key info, headings, shorter length • Readability • Dark text on light background, clear links • Text focused – Images can be an issue Single Call to Action in every email • Only one action per email (hard to do, but powerful) • Donate, volunteer, register, watch video, etc. • Jam study Fundraising Best Practices 33 of in the Digital Age
  34. 34. Frequency Don’t fear the unsubscribe • Probably not going to be supporters anyways • May not happen anyways – Case study More frequent “asks” • Not always for money – build a relationship • Other small favors and actions Fundraising Best Practices 34 of in the Digital Age
  35. 35. Follow Up / Thank You Easiest way to build follow up – saying “Thank You” The Power of Thank You • Most folks don’t get thanked enough • Makes both sides feel good (Maslow) • Remember the emotional connection Say “Thanks” right away (auto-generated email) • Additional calls-to-action • What can they do from here? • Interest and support are high right now Fundraising Best Practices 35 of in the Digital Age
  36. 36. Thank You Strategies Thank them throughout the year • Great reason to email, You will stand out Thank you updates • Highlight individual / Success stories if possible • Let them know it could not have happened without them • Still work to do – soft ask Thank you Call to Action • Thanks with a request for favor Feed the Funnel • Make them part of the fundraising campaign Fundraising Best Practices 36 of in the Digital Age
  37. 37. Thank You Example Generic: Personal: Thanks to you, Marie and her family will Thank you for your generous have something to eat every night this donation to support XYZ year. Nonprofit. Your gift has helped Marie, and many We greatly appreciate your more children like her, focus on learning support of our organization and instead of hunger while in school. our mission. We look forward to sharing more of the successes you have helped to build in our newsletter. Fundraising Best Practices 37 of in the Digital Age
  38. 38. 4. Video Fundraising Best Practices 38 of in the Digital Age
  39. 39. Why Online Video? More affordable and easier than ever • Flipcam or phone / YouTube More Effective • Wharton School of Business study showed marketing with video to be 600% more effective than print alone • Videos shared 12x more than links and text posts combined (facebook) YouTube • #2 search engine (maybe #1) • Over 3 billion views per day • People love to watch videos Fundraising Best Practices 39 of in the Digital Age
  40. 40. Online video and social media Joined at the Hip • Online video IS social media • The Big 3 – Facebook, Twitter and YouTube • YouTube – Channel, subscribers, friends, comments Video gives you something to talk about Google loves it • In fact they own it • Video ranks much faster than written content Fundraising Best Practices 40 of in the Digital Age
  41. 41. Emotional ConnectionIts all about the story • Individual stories more effective • Personal connection • Emotion = Action • Emotion >> RationalityVideo can do this easier thanother mediums • Reading vs. watching/listening Fundraising Best Practices 41 of in the Digital Age
  42. 42. Online Video Basics Need Sound Fundamentals FIRST • Online Hierarchy of Needs KISS - Keep It Simple Stupid • Keep it Short – under 2 min. for most • Keep it Simple – one main topic What are you hoping to accomplish with video? • Leads, build email list, awareness? Who should be the “voice”? • Individual, multiple, staff interest Fundraising Best Practices 42 of in the Digital Age
  43. 43. Ideas for Projects Testimonials / Client Stories “The Interview” Video Tour of Office / Staff Seminars / Trainings How To / Tips 35 million searches each month on YouTube for “how to” videos Video Annual Reports Music Video / Promo Holiday Messages Fundraising Best Practices 43 of in the Digital Age
  44. 44. What to do with video Incorporate into your current marketing • Website, Newsletter, Flyers, email signature Blog, tweet, facebook • Reason to post, Most clicked on posts Search Engine Optimization (SEO) • Videos rank very quickly (Google loves em’) • Keyword optimization - Great source of backlinks Email Marketing • Very high click-through rates Video Donation Page • Show video right on the donation page – Keep the emotion Fundraising Best Practices 44 of in the Digital Age
  45. 45. 5. Mobile Fundraising Best Practices 45 of in the Digital Age
  46. 46. What is mobile marketing • marketing on or with a mobile device. Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) • “a set of practices that enables organizations to communicate and engage with their audience in an interactive and relevant manner through any mobile device or network.” MMA Glossary – Fundraising Best Practices 46 of in the Digital Age
  47. 47. Where to start? Our suggested order • Based on ease of implementation and bang for buck Beginner / Intermediate Advanced • Mobile website • Mobile giving • Mobile email • SMS / Text • QR codes • Text2Give •Mobile Apps Remember the Online Hierarchy – build on the base Fundraising Best Practices 47 of in the Digital Age
  48. 48. Mobile websites The web is changing – its now multi-device • PC, laptop, netbook, tablet, smartphone, eReader, etc. • The New Multi-screen World – Google / Ipsos • More purchases moving online • 83% PC, 63% tablet, 31% phone • Expect similar trends in mobile fundraising as we are seeing in online fundraising Fundraising Best Practices 48 of in the Digital Age
  49. 49. The right time When is the right time to create your mobile site? • Convio’s Guide to Mobile Web says do it when mobile traffic hits 5% • Looking to engage younger donors • Your content management system makes it easy • Doing a redesign or update Reminder: Focus on fundamentals first • Don’t chase shiny objects • Get your foundation in place first Fundraising Best Practices 49 of in the Digital Age
  50. 50. How to get your site mobile ready First question - Hire someone or Do-it-yourself? What type of site do you currently have? • CMS – most have easy to use plugins to get mobile ready • Static HTML – build a separate site, or upgrade to a CMS Mobile website Services • Free and paid services • Help you create a mobile friendly site without any code Fundraising Best Practices 50 of in the Digital Age
  51. 51. Mobile website services – Google’s mobile information site – free and paid plans - Free and paid plans - Paid Your webhost may offer a built-in solution Search Google for others * We have not used these services, but have heard positive reviews. We use Wordpress and plugin currently. Fundraising Best Practices 51 of in the Digital Age
  52. 52. Example – Nonprofit R+D Nonprofit R+D currently at 2% mobile traffic Starting to track and experiment Fundraising Best Practices 52 of in the Digital Age
  53. 53. Mobile email 82% of smartphone users check and send email • What happens if they click to your site? • This is another reason you need a mobile website Mobile email templates • Most providers now offer these • Easy to use and set up Strongly linked to your mobile site • No sense in doing mobile email if your site is not ready for them Fundraising Best Practices 53 of in the Digital Age
  54. 54. Action Steps Start where you are Select a few strategies or ideas and test Take action, collect results, evaluate results Take another action Fundraising Best Practices 54 of in the Digital Age
  55. 55. Q&A Download the slides: Contact Info: Richard Dietz Visit our booth for more info on our webinars and training programs Fundraising Best Practices 55 of in the Digital Age