How to Leverage Hidden Fundraising Data, from a Social Media Expert

March 16, 2021 Brian Isaac

George Hawwa’s ready to make a big call on successful fundraisers over the next ten years.

As Founder and Director of high-performing social media campaign agency Attention Experts, it’s no surprise that he’s focused on data, and how to use it.

In fact, he says that the cultivation of databases is going to lie at the core of the very best donations appeals over the next ten years. The great shame, he says, is that too many non-profits aren’t willing to dig deeper into the data.

That’s because there’s much more available at the fingertips of even the smallest non-profits than most would realise.


“Collecting digital databases is key to fundraising online."

So what is the kind of data that non-profits can use to maximise their fundraising potential, and how can they access it?

It starts with good collection and cultivation practices.

In the social media space, non-profits can begin collecting extra data that they may not be aware of. The combination of ID numbers and date of interaction, in particular, can produce powerful results.

It’s not that this data will produce instant results. Instead, it will give decision-makers the tools they need to make the right decisions when it comes to executing new campaigns.

The reality is that this kind of data is going to be available to smaller and smaller charities, along with powerful analytics and tools.

“Fundraisers can embrace a much more omnichannel approach when they understand databases and how many touchpoints lead to a donation."

One feature of the social media age is the ability to solicit micro-donations, but Mr Hawwa warned that these are a double-edged sword for non-profits.

On one hand, micro-donations represent a shift away from personalised forms of fundraising, and while they might have the capacity to widely increase supporter bases, it also risks making donors more transient.

“If a donor gives to a quick social media campaign, will they give again in twelve months?”

But on the other, some non-profits might choose to lean into the micro-donations space. But they must be willing to dive deep into the data to avoid unnecessary spending and distancing donors.

Either way, Mr Hawwa’s point stands – well-cultivated data lies at the heart of good fundraising campaigns, whether they’re wide or deep.

And the call for every non-profit to heed is simple: building databases that can be geared towards better campaign decisions is something that anyone can do if they put their mind to it.

Over the next ten years, good data is going to switch from luxury to essential, especially in an increasingly crowded marketplace.


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