Finding Your Power Fundraisers
As we continue to navigate toward a post-pandemic vision of fundraising, one of the most impacted parts of our sector has been the events industry. While there is a lot to unpack across the different types of events, peer-to-peer fundraising took a pretty big hit. According to the newest release of the Peer to Peer Forum’s Top 30 P2P Fundraising Programs, there was a 33.9% drop in revenue attributed to these types of events. It was also the first time that revenue attributed to the largest programs didn’t break $1 billion dollars.
As these changes came to take shape, so did the emergence of a particular type of peer-to-peer fundraising superstar: the power fundraiser. In late 2020, Neon One began an intensive analysis of all peer-to-peer fundraising events across our top performing clients to see what changes were occurring. This culminated in a new report called Finding Your Power Fundraiser; let’s unpack the top takeaways that will stay with peer to peer fundraising for the future.
The Rise of the Power Fundraiser
The truth is, the traditional peer-to-peer fundraising event — for example community walks, 5Ks or other activity-based events — has been in steady decline for years. Reviewing trends in the Peer-to-Peer Forum’s Top 30 P2P Event Program’s survey, there has been consistent decline or fluctuation in the growth of walks and runs.
While these programs still bring in considerable amounts of revenue, 2020 caused all nonprofits to reevaluate and adjust.
When reviewing the effectiveness of their programs, one of the first questions that an organization should ask themselves is the value of the program to the fundraisers themselves. If there is healthy growth in both the number of fundraisers to your operations, as well as the amount of money they are raising for the campaign, then these are signs of a healthy program.
Neon One’s analysis found that the average number of donations to a fundraiser’s page stayed steady in 2020 compared to 2019, the average total sum of donations per fundraiser’s campaign rose 23.6%, while the average number of fundraisers per campaign dropped by 33.2%. Also, the number of fundraisers coming back to support another campaign the same year rose by 16.2%.
How to Empower the Power Fundraiser
While there was a proliferation of new events and experiences to keep bringing back the most passionate supporters an organization has, there are a few key technological offerings that help maintain the retention of the power fundraisers an organization attracts.
- Portals: Allowing a fundraiser to come back to a previous campaign or even new event without having to continuously create logins helps quicken the initiation of new fundraising campaigns.
- DIY: One of the fastest growing ways that people show their support is actually by initiating their own types of events with little involvement of the organization. This can come through Facebook Fundraisers as well as nonprofit managed platforms.
- Communication: Providing fundraisers with sophisticated communication suites that rival that of the nonprofit is becoming an exciting way to make these supporters want to keep coming back. Social media messaging templates, text to give, livestream chat and much more are allowing fundraisers to truly feel like they are with their network while raising money for the cause they love.
- CRM integration: During #GivingTuesday in 2020, 81% of all Neon Fundraise platform donors were brand new to the nonprofit. Yet the newest Fundraising Effectiveness Project data shows that new donor retention is an abysmal 16%. Syncing your donors and connected fundraisers to your CRM will help streamline retention of these types of donors.
We’re Creating Power Communities, Too
It isn’t just individual fundraisers who are driving changes in the landscape of peer-to-peer. In the report, community giving days were also researched to understand the impact that peer-to-peer fundraising was having on one of the most undervalued parts of our sector’s revenue streams.
A giving day gives hundreds if not thousands of nonprofits the chance to create new connections within their community while lowering the typical cost per acquisition by leveraging the marketing power and reach of the giving day host as well as the aggregate impact of marketing the day brings.
This can be extremely beneficial to small nonprofits in particular, which is why it was very exciting to see that the average community giving day grew its peer to peer fundraising revenue by 120% in 2020 and generate an average of $221,000 in peer-to-peer attributed funds during a community giving day.
The world is changing faster than ever and social good organizations need guidance on where to put their time and energy. By activating their power fundraisers, they will be able to grow and scale their peer-to-peer fundraising like never before.
Tim Sarrantonio oversees Neon One’s ecosystem of software, consultant, and institutional partners that can address any nonprofit need. Neon One provides best in class products with NeonCRM, Rallybound, CiviCore, Arts People, and an ecosystem ensures that over 27 product integrations and over 90 consultants are working to solve problems specific to nonprofits.