While so much of the story has yet to be written, the disruptive events of 2020 show us that philanthropy is transforming. Right before our eyes. The pandemic has radically changed day-to-day life and that change extends to the ways that our donors each engage and support the causes that are closest to their hearts.
At the same time, we can’t discount that transformation is occurring while the US economy is in recession. Yet, fundraising professionals report optimism. As leaders, we have done this. We have faced challenging economic environments and uncertainty, led our programs boldly and emerged stronger and strengthened – although we may not look the same as before.
Data is the great stabilizer
What differs from the past are the tools we have at hand today. Data, insights and digital platforms are giving every nonprofit organization the opportunity to evolve into a data company. Amid the chaos and confusion, the digital footprint created through every touchpoint with donors informs and validates next steps.
These insights mean that nonprofits have the ability to identify the next major donor, group those most likely to respond to a mid-level appeal or deprioritize COVID response donors who are least likely to transition to mission-based support. As the fundraising landscape changes, data becomes the great stabilizer and growth opportunity can be instantly explored and activated.
Today, it’s about what we do with that intelligence that matters most. The organizations that will thrive in the next normal are detecting this market movement and deftly investing in opportunity. They are responding to the change forced by the pandemic and these organizations regard 2020 as a year of both disruption and innovation – aligning the course of their philanthropic programs to the requirements and preferences of today’s donor.
Finding Growth through Radical Disruption
When individuals give their time or resources to others, they move from the “I” to the “we.” That act of giving transforms the giver as much as the receiver, and the world is changed. We believe it’s time to listen to our donors, take stock of where they are headed and enable this giving experience. It’s time to adjust thinking and plans to drive growth.
At Pursuant, we work with nonprofits to use Augmented Intelligence to decode the personal experiences that inspire people to find, engage and give more. Here are five ways that nonprofits are using these data-driven insights to track where their donors are headed and find growth through disruption.
- Identify COVID donors most likely to support mission – Will COVID-inspired donors give episodically, like disaster-response donors or will they migrate to become mission-based supporters and remain on your file in 2021? We believe the answer is both. Nonprofits are screening new COVID donors for charitable tendencies and seeking a relationship with those who have a history of mission-based support within their nonprofit sector.
- Explore the profile of your COVID donors – How will the profile of COVID acquired donors change your donor composition? Do these donors warrant an alternate stewardship strategy? Nonprofits are augmenting donor records with GivingDNA– demographic and psychographic insights that answer these questions – and then fine-tuning communications with accuracy, based on life stage, channel responsiveness and giving capacity.
- Engage your long-term donors – Who are your long-term donors? How many are on your file? These donors are the manifestation of meaningful acquisition and retention strategies and, by nature, have the greatest long-term value. Nonprofits are identifying their most loyal donors and continuing to communicate and engage as they navigate to the next normal, together. Ask your donors how their priorities have shifted, if at all, and determine how to remain aligned.
- Screen for mid-level candidates – Do you know which of your donors are ready to upgrade? Mid-level donors are vital to the creation of a dynamic giving pyramid – often uniting the reach of individual giving programs with major gifts. Nonprofits are actively screening donors who are ready to upgrade to the mid-level. Actively listen for individuals who are giving frequently or who give amounts with the capacity to give more. Prioritize these folks with personal outreach and engagement.
- Evaluate scenarios for growth – What if you launched a monthly giving program this fall? What if you did nothing? Annual planning calendars are no longer business as usual. Nonprofit leaders are seeking insights from data-driven growth scenarios to support strategic planning. Make use of scenario planning tools like the Pursuant Scenario Planning Tool to innovate, predict outcomes and assess the impact of bold decision-making.
Take Command of Your Data
Is your organization listening to where its constituents are headed? What steps should you take to move beyond business as usual this year and beyond?
The Pursuant GivingDNA platform decodes each supporter revealing elements of who they are and what motivates them to action. Sign up for your demo today.
Contact us to learn how we are working with nonprofits to use Augmented Intelligence to decode the personal experiences that inspire people to find, engage and give more than ever before. It’s the way supporters engage with nonprofits today.