[Webinar Recap] State of the Nation on Fundraising: Key Takeaways for Nonprofits

August 4, 2020 Brian Isaac

This week at Blackbaud, Scott Lockie (CEO of the Australian Charity Guide and emPOWER your Mission) helped us discover:

  • The latest trends, risks, challenges and opportunities within the nonprofit sector 
  • The latest tech assisting charities with their Fundraising, Marketing and Donor Stewardship 
  • The impact of COVID-19 on the sector and what the future holds

Read on to learn more of the nonprofit insights Scott brought to the table! 

The current state of competition in the nonprofit sector 

Here are some of the topline numbers of the Australia and New Zealand charity sectors. 

  • 50 new charities are born every week (there are currently about 58,193 in total!) 
  • The nonprofit sector is one of the most competitive sectors in Australia, and is the second-highest employment sector, with 1.3m staff 
  • New Zealand has the highest density of charities in the entire world (about 27,513)
  • New Zealand volunteering is bigger than you think: about 230,000 people volunteer weekly
  • New Zealand charities find 49% of their income self-generated (service and trading), koha/donations are at 21%, grants and other funding come in at 17% and other revenue 13%.

Consider these three important questions for your organisation

Looking at the above stats, it’s clear how critical it is to stand out in such a crowded market. Scott posed some important questions to consider, centred around the need for differentiation: 

  • What’s your organisation’s unique service proposition?  
  • Why should someone use or support your NFP? 
  • What are some ways you can make your cause stand out? 

Fundraising, marketing, and tech trends in 2020 

Did you know? Only 34% of charities have an online presence! Scott covered many of the overall trends relating to the nonprofit sector in regards to fundraising, marketing, and technology as a whole. Here’s a summary: 

  • Giving overall is declining due to rising costs of living, slow wage growth, increasing house prices, and societal factors like COVID-19 
  • However, expect a rise in sporadic, opportunistic donors, who are more interested in giving to a single cause or a campaign as opposed to recurring giving 
  • Millennials and Generation Z are extra-passionate about environmental causes 
  • Gen X? They’re more interested in human rights causes

Try these innovative strategies to reach your supporters

There’s promise in the digital age. Here are some of the ways innovative and creative nonprofits are using technology to reach their supporters in 2020:

  • Influencer marketing: there’s a huge opportunity here to engage with advocates or social influencers who are passionate about your cause. 
  • Mobile giving: while giving via SMS is still growing in Australia, it’s an opportunity that’s really taken off in the US and Europe, and for good reason: 98% of all text messages get open and read, meaning you’re almost guaranteed to reach your supporters. 
  • Integrated payments: supporters want the most seamless experience possible. Giving them options to pay via Apple Pay and other integrated solutions is one they’ll sure to appreciate. 
  • Return to authenticity: choosing to go for a one-to-one approach over a one-to-many approach. People give to people, not brands: find out what drives your supporters to give and establish contact that builds rapport with your community. 
  • Focus on storytelling. Bring your supporters along for the journey: use platforms like Facebook Live, Instagram Live, YouTube, Twitter, and other platforms to stream live to your supporters, sharing your message, in a relatable, “human” manner. 

12 Focus Areas to Improve Your Nonprofit in 2020

These are 12 key focus on which your organisation should focus your efforts in 2020: 

  • Diversify your revenue streams: get a mix of government grants, self-generated revenue, and donations from individuals, social enterprises, and others
  • Innovate at every opportunity: rethink your current practices and determine how your organisation can be even better
  • Embrace digital technology and data: through fundraising and donor management platforms like Blackbaud, you can better attract, manage, and retain clients, donors, corporates, and more.
  • Segment and personalise your database based on demographics and individual preferences. A quote from The Economist reads, “the world’s most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data.” By learning more about your community, you can better serve them. 
  • Collaborate inside and outside of the nonprofit sector. Think bigger and expand your reach: tap into small business, corporates, universities, TAFE, chambers of commerce, and local councils. 
  • Cultivate a strong and loyal base of donors, corporate, partners, and volunteers 
  • Adopt a growth mindset. Growth of your mission isn’t just for marketing, it’s everyone’s job. 
  • Measure your impact by using the industry’s top data tracking and analytics tools 
  • Recruit and retain top talent, especially those with digital skills. Upskill your staff in digital marketing, fundraising innovation, and impact measurement 
  • Ensure your organisation can stay agile and get to market quickly with new campaigns 
  • Build assets for long-term sustainability and branding using online design tools like Canva 
  • Ensure you stay on top of changing government requirements

At the end of the day, it's all about forming connections and creating a positive social impact. Highlight your impact over everything else to ensure your team stays on the right path, your stakeholders are satisfied, and your supporters are assured they're making a difference.

Directing extra effort into even a small number of the above areas is sure to move your mission forward and help your team shine in 2020.

Watch the full webinar here for more!
Fundraising State of the Nation with Scott Lockie (4 August 2020)

or find Scott's presentation slides here


Question: which challenges are you struggling with the most?

Leave a comment letting us know. We're always excited to find the right solutions for our nonprofit community.


Additional Resources from Scott

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