Donor Giving Trends for Today and Tomorrow, Part 4
[Editor’s note: This is part 4 of a four-part series on the session “Trends for Tomorrow — Action Today” held at Fund Raising Day in New York. View part 1 here, part 2 here and part 3 here.]
In the session "Trends for Tomorrow — Action Today," fundraising pros Margaret Holman, president of Holman Consulting; consultant Kathryn Slocum; Harry Lynch, CEO of Sanky Communications and SankyNet; and moderator Marilyn Hoyt, a nonprofit consultant, shared donor trends in individual giving, institutional giving and online giving, and what nonprofits can take away from those trends.
Lynch said he recently came across his notes from the 2005 Association of Fundraising Professionals conference, and he shared some of the stats from six years ago:
- At that time the total amount of money raised online was $2.6 billion — 1.1 percent of total giving to U.S. nonprofits.
- E-mail was the second most powerful online fundraising tool behind the website.
- Two-thirds of American adults were using e-mail and the Internet, though only a third of the 65-plus demographic.
- The big buzz at the time was the excitement over the Internet and text on phones.
- The perception was that kids texted, not adults, and they were using this social network called MySpace. Facebook just came out at Harvard.
- There was a ton of tweeting going on … from birds, Lynch joked. Twitter did not exist yet.
“What a difference six years make,” he said.
There have been seismic shifts in demographics, lifestyle and communications since 2005, and they are ongoing today. Lynch laid out what’s trending now:
- The growth in online income has been exponential — there’s been a 700 percent increase in online donations in the past six years.
- Facebook is estimated to be the fastest growing company ever, with around 700 million users.
- The latest data estimates there are 6,000 tweets per second.
- Many charities are seeing 30 percent to 40 percent of direct-mail recipients making their gifts online.
Essentially, a whole heck of a lot has changed in the past six years. Here is the fundraising reality in 2011, according to Lynch: