IT Guy to Fundraisers: Partner With Us
Who was the last person who asked you to donate to a cause? Was it a direct request from an organization? A friend on behalf of an organization? A Web site? A Facebook request? And how much did they know about you before they asked? Was there a gradual build up to the ask, or was it a simple plea?
Technology has had a major impact in the way fundraising is managed. We have moved to the Web and e-mail to communicate with our prospects and donors. We have sophisticated databases to track donor information. We have access to a whole new world of resources on the Web. We are able to reach greater audiences quicker within social networks. We are able to give our supporters access to technology to do the ask for us.
In my experience, the YMCA has historically relied on a person-to-person ask. Over the years we have created some great methods to run fundraising campaigns with lots of campaigners. We separate them into teams, set goals and provide prospect information. It’s an effective system, but it can be people- and time-intensive. The challenge is that the way people communicate, share with each other and ask friends to support a cause is changing for many.
What seems to be missing is the ability for us to just restructure how we fundraise; we would rather slowly blend in the new stuff. We might have adopted newer databases, slicker software and started online donations, however we might still be running our fundraising in the exact same way we used to. I would venture to say that to realize the possibilities available with new technology we have to reinvent our fundraising.
What is the relationship between your fundraising and technology staffs?
What is the mix between communications, marketing and IT with your fundraising staff?