New Tools Not Replacing Traditional Fundraising Channels, Survey Finds

Although they are increasing their use of new interactive channels, most nonprofit organizations continue to leverage traditional fundraising and communication channels, a new survey by fundraising software provider Blackbaud finds.

Based on responses from nearly 2,400 nonprofit leaders in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, India, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States, the 2010 Global State of the Nonprofit Industry Survey (49 pages, PDF) found that the use of new social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter is placing a tremendous strain on nonprofit organizations, which, in the aggregate, have yet to see a significant increase in revenues from the use of these new tools, even as the costs associated with each channel have risen. At the same time, donors, baby boomers in particular, are scrutinizing organizations more closely to see that their money is being spent well and that organizations are being run efficiently.

In addition, given an increased focus on donor retention coupled with the growing cost of donor acquisition, constituent relationship management (CRM) in many organizations is transitioning away from a traditional transactional fundraising model to more of a relationship-focused model. At the same time, the survey found that a vast majority of nonprofits around the world expect to increase their investment in fundraising staff.

"There is an increasing interest in the nonprofit sector in improving governance, planning, and fundraising, and investing in training and equipment to enhance organizational performance," said Amy Comer, Blackbaud's director of market research. "Blackbaud has conducted the State of the Nonprofit Industry Survey for six years to provide an overview of trends that can help nonprofits assess their operations and compare their performance with other organizations."