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August 23, 2022

What's Trending in the Nonprofit Sector

SW_Whats Trending in the Nonprofit Sector


With six months of 2022 under our belts, it's an excellent time to see what has been working for nonprofits this year and things to be aware of in the months ahead.


This article will discuss tech and fundraising, challenges to be aware of, and ways to work with them, not against them.



One of the most effective ways nonprofits get the word out about their organizations is through social media. Did you know that nearly 9 in 10 people with internet access use social media? That's huge!


Social media is an excellent way for nonprofits to showcase their story with short-form videos, such as on TikTok. Utilizing platforms like Facebook, Instagram & Twitter, you can promote giving campaigns and introduce yourself to current and potential followers.


Pro Tip: Utilize hashtags, no matter what platform you choose. They are a great way to ensure you get seen by a wider audience interested in the content you are producing.



Social media allows you and your followers/donors/volunteers to connect differently from direct mail or traditional advertising. Share information about in-person events with digital invites, promote Amazon wishlists for donation items and live stream fundraisers. The possibilities are endless.


Now you need to ask yourself: which platform(s) do I choose?


The answer depends on who your target demographic is.


If you're looking to reach a broader range of people, Facebook is a sure thing, although it tends to skew older. Instagram and TikTok are more popular with people in their 30s and younger.


If you're interested in kicking off your social media strategy using short-form video, like on TikTok or Instagram, consider checking out TikTok For Good


Harkening back to when we mentioned hashtags earlier, finding the right hashtags will boost your content organically (and for free) compared to paid advertising.


We can all agree that mobile is here to stay, especially given that smartphone users reached 271 million this year in the United States alone. 


So what does that mean for your nonprofit?


You can no longer afford to have a direct mail-only donation system. Donors need to have a way to donate online, on their phone, and with a payment system that accepts options like Apple and Google Pay.


Just as with online donations, volunteers need to be able to sign up for opportunities on your website in a way that's easy to use. Utilizing a platform that allows them to sign in and get all the information they need in one place will increase the likelihood they'll be repeat volunteers. 


Any media that is outside facing needs to be mobile-friendly. Whether it's email, social media, or your website, everything needs to display correctly regardless of what device people use.


Many nonprofits are turning to text messaging as a viable option for staying in touch with donors and volunteers. I mean, the open rate for text messages is 99%, compared to 28-33% with email.


Text-to-donate is a growing opportunity for many nonprofits. Still, your supporters must agree to receive communications from you this way and accept the terms of use.


As discussed above, video marketing has grown exponentially in the last few years. Statistics show that 57% of people watch a nonprofit video before donating.


Additionally, live streaming and video conferences are a great way to keep donors and volunteers involved, even if they can't be where you are in person.


Fundraising and Philanthropy

As we've mentioned several times, donors are looking for a personalized experience regarding the organizations to which they donate their time and money. However, this doesn't mean just putting their name in an email or letter.


Donors want to know how their donations are making an impact, have the opportunity to share their feedback, and know that their interest in your organization is appreciated.


Ways to accomplish this are to offer benefits, like swag and appreciation events, to recognize their contributions.


Monthly giving and customer retention are also growing in number. The average regular giver is worth more than three one-time donors.


It's no wonder that online fundraising and digital philanthropy have become so popular. Nonprofits have reported an increase of 77% in their online fundraising efforts over the past five years—that's huge!


Peer-to-peer fundraising tools, such as Facebook Fundraisers, are also rising. People love to share the causes they're passionate about, and if you associate a number that you're hoping to raise? Chances are you're going to see even more donations come in.


We've all seen fundraising requests gain traction following a disaster. If you plan to raise funds, put together a strategic plan that lays out for potential donors how you plan to address the immediate need AND sustain it with their donations.


Corporate Giving is another excellent strategy for fundraising. The amount of corporate giving increased to 1.4% in 2021 and is estimated to reach 4-6% by the end of 2022.


In a study conducted by Philanthropy Outlook for 2020-2021, they discovered that companies are starting to recognize the benefits of supporting their employees' philanthropic interests. Additionally, 58% of Americans consider a company's charitable commitments when applying for places to work.


We must consider nonprofits as community hubs connecting with various audiences. It's vital to ensure that you have the right tools to stay abreast of trends in the sector so you can refine your strategies throughout the rest of 2022 and into the future.


Looking for more ideas on how to increase your fundraising efforts? Sign up for our educational nonprofit email series for more tips, tricks, and ideas.

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