Feb 5 2014, 1:52pm CST | by Forbes
A new report from nonprofit software and services provider Blackbaud shows that giving is growing – especially online.
Charitable giving revenue grew 4.9% in 2013, the largest gain since the 2008 recession. U.S. based organizations with annual fundraising over $10 million saw 5% growth. Those that receive $1 million to $10 million in gifts gained 3.8% and the smallest nonprofits – less than $1 million raised annually – grew 3.6%.
The tables, however, turn with online giving revenue which, at 13.5% growth overall, had its second consecutive year of double-digit gains. Large organizations saw 12.7% online giving growth, medium sized organizations grew 11.4% and small organizations grew 18.4%.
The report explains, “Specific events – like the Boston Marathon bombings, Midwest storms, and Philippines typhoon disaster – clearly drove online giving during the year. End-of year giving was boosted by an increase in #GivingTuesday donations. This is a trend to watch over time as the movement grows.”
Online giving made up 6.4% of overall giving, down from 7% in 2012. The report though points out that online giving surged in response to Hurricane Sandy that year.
“This metric has moved up and down since 2010,” reads the report. “We expect these types of fluctuations to continue in the future. Because online giving is the first response channel of choice for donors during episodic giving, there will be times when online giving spikes.” While 18.2% of medical research giving came from digital, just 4.2% of faith-based giving did.
But the most successful nonprofits are betting that digital giving is the way of the future and that millennials will lead the way.
The Millennial Impact, a report that looks at the way the 18 to 32 generation gives, found that nearly half of millennials follow between one and five nonprofit organizations on social media. More than 65% of survey respondents receive emails from one to five different nonprofits.
According to Blackbaud’s Generational Giving Report 60% of millennials give an average of $481 to charitable causes annually. Most say they would give via mobile phone, and 8% have gone as far as giving via social media.
In the new Blackbaud report several philanthropic leaders show recognition that in order to reach young donors they need to harness both technology and connectivity.
John Lippincott, president of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, tells Blackbaud, “Even if gifts from recent graduates are $10 or $25 gifts using social media, it’s as important that [universities have] gotten those recent graduates into the habit of giving, and acquired information about what they’re interested in, and can use that to sharpen the appeal.” He also notes that research suggests millennials are as willing to give as prior generations were at a young age but are “much more focused on wanting to support the things that matter to them.”
Ford Bell, president of the American Alliance of Museums, also calls for specificity. Across generations he says, “There’s still a problem in the museum field. People still feel we hang stuff on walls. People have to see we’re making a difference in the community.” Young people especially want to feel that a museum they support is their place, and Bell says museums need to uses social media to get that point across.
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Source: Forbes Business
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