Final Thoughts on Fundraising 2011
Well, this is it, folks — our last chance to talk about fundraising in 2011 while it's still 2011. We know you're all busy sending out those last-minute e-mail appeals, but when you finally click "send" one last time this year, grab yourself a cup of cheer and settle in with some fellow fundraisers as they share their thoughts on fundraising 2011.
We asked: How would you describe the state of fundraising as we close out 2011?. And they said:
President, PJBarden Inc.
2011 was surprising for many small and mid-sized nonprofits. Some that had retreated and hunkered down in 2009 and 2010 took some calculated risks in 2011, and saw some good results. Acquisition was especially good for small-scale efforts that focused on targeting prospects, standing out in the crowd, telling stories and taking careful risks.
Creative director, TrueSense Marketing
It's been another tough year, but you can be master of your own fate.
Director of nonprofit services, Care2
President and CEO, Russ Reid
Direct-response fundraising remains strong for organizations with compelling, urgent causes. Major-gift revenues remain soft because it's hard to give a gift of appreciated property when the property hasn't appreciated! This is a time to be doubly appreciative of major donors. Cement the relationships and underscore the importance of what they do give. It will pay off later.
Fundraising expert and radio-show host, The Nonprofit Coach
Principal and president, Non-Profit Group, DMW Direct
Overall results for fundraising are flat. Success, however, is coming to those who execute campaigns well and are clever but not reckless.
Founder, Lighthouse Counsel
Fundraising — and donors — are adapting to the "new reality," a time of slow economic growth and uncertainty. Fundraising must be more effective and address increasing expectations from donors.
Vice president, MINDset Direct
Flat is the new up.
Director of Internet solutions, Blackbaud
Fundraising is still in recovery. The Blackbaud Index of Charitable Giving has shown single-digit and double-digit growth throughout the year. The challenge is that the improvements aren't evenly distributed across the sector yet. Some groups are bouncing back faster than others.
President/creative director, McPherson Associates
Generally steady, like retail sales — no huge ups or downs.
Fundraising consultant and author, Fired-Up Fundraising
Unsettled. Unstable. Totally hanging on the state of the economy and everyone's sense of financial stability.
Fundraising coach and consultant, Get Fully Funded
The state of fundraising at the end of 2011 depends on the mindset of the fundraiser. Those who have a plan and are raising money on purpose, AND who have a positive mindset WILL raise money and meet their goals. Those who are being reactive and blaming the economy for their problems won't be successful.
Senior partner, Veritus Group
Better than ever! People NEED to give. It's built into our DNA. It's our job to help people find JOY in their giving. If we are doing our work right, it doesn't matter if we're in a recession or not. So, really, the state of fundraising is really a state of mind.
Freelance copywriter and creative strategist
For political groups, ramping up to rake it in between now and Election Day 2012. For everyone whose tires are deflating as a result, cautious. For groups feeling the continuing pinch of a recession that's technically supposed to be over but must not feel like it's over to donors because giving hasn't bounced back, also cautious.
President, Mail Enterprises
Positive for donor cultivation, still tough for donor acquisition.
Senior copywriter, Huntsinger & Jeffer
Panicky. The onslaught of new media, and the myriad ways of touching donors are bewildering, even for most professionals. And there is little or no consensus, and even fewer "best practices" on the best ways to link fundraising and "engagement.