Why People Choose Not to Give

It’s difficult to imagine the kind of world we would live in if people never volunteered their time, money, or services in an effort to aide others. Without the generosity of those who give, many volunteer and nonprofit groups who help millions of lives each day would likely be unable to operate. As a nation, the total amount that we donated to charitable organizations in 2015 was $373.25 billion, up nearly 25 billion from the year before, and the number is steadily rising. More and more people are choosing every day to share some of their wealth with those who are less fortunate and struggling to make ends meet. While this is certainly amazing, there are still many people who choose not to help others through donating their time and money. Here are a few of the reasons why people choose not to give to charity.

  • They feel removed from the problem.

When people hear about a tragedy happening in another area or nation, while they likely feel pity over the tragedy, it’s less likely to affect them than a tragedy close to home would. As a species, we have evolved to care the most for those who are the closest to us, so when things happen in places we’ve never been to people we’ve never met, it’s more difficult to connect to the victims. Help people see how a devastating blow to any of us can be a devastating blow to all of us and get them involved in giving to others.

  • They don’t believe their donation will make a difference.

To the average, middle class American, parting with $10 doesn’t seem like all that much, just like it doesn’t seem $10 will be able to bring about any change. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. First and foremost, if every person who donated a small sum of money had chosen not to give, the dollars and cents lost would add up very quickly; there’s no such thing as ‘too small’ of a donation when all who donate to a particular cause are working towards the same goal. Second, the cost of necessities like food and water in areas of dire need are often far below our costs of living; for just $2 you can “provide 7 children with micronutrient fortification for 1 year” and for just $3 you can protect someone for 3-4 years from malaria.

  • They need their money for themselves.

To suggest that you should donate all or even most of the money you make to charity would be ill-advised and likely perpetuate poverty problems overtime. While you need enough money to be able to support and sustain a stable life for your family, try giving up a little so that you can give others a lot. Do you splurge every day on a high-priced coffee? Skip one day a week and donate that money instead. Find little ways that you can reduce what you use by just a little so you can help others by giving them a whole lot.

Your Top Tips For Running A Successful Nonprofit

Matt Kupec Successful Nonprofit

Many people think that running a nonprofit organization is a breeze. All you have to do is find a way to get some money and donate it, right? Wrong. Fundraising is only one aspect of running a nonprofit organization. Nonprofits focus on finding ways to help the overall community, therefore running a nonprofit may be slightly different than running a for profit business. Running a nonprofit requires a lot of critical thinking skills, as well as the ability to deal with problems and sudden changes. Here are your top tips for running a nonprofit organization.

1. Hire People with Passion 

One of the most important aspects of running a nonprofit is teamwork. It is impossible to run an organization without people who can use their skills and abilities to contribute to the organization. It’s also important to look for people who are passionate about your organization. People that care will help make a difference in your organization which will effectively make a difference in your community.

2. Keep Records of Everything

Keeping record of all the incoming and outgoing financial flows is critical to nonprofit, especially when it comes to filing your taxes. Nonprofits have specific guidelines and exemptions when it comes to filing taxes, so it is critical to keep track of every penny spent or credited to your account. It’s important to have someone in charge of record keeping within your organization.

3. Organization Skills

A big part of running a nonprofit organization is actually staying organized. Nonprofits require a lot of planning and time-management, therefore it is essential to practice your organization skills. Planning is another aspect of running the organization therefore it is critical to know all the details of your organization. Reading books, such as 7 Habits of Highly Effective People can help you get started with organizing your thoughts so that you can apply those skills within your organization.

4. Define Your Goals and Objectives

Establishing and understanding your goals and objectives is critical for the success of your nonprofit. It’s a good idea to have weekly or monthly meetings with you team to see where you are in reaching those goals and objectives. Leadership skills are very important in initiate your organization to work towards the same goals and objectives as a team.

5. Establish Relationships

A large part of nonprofit success is dependent on networking. It’s important to establish relationships with the community and donors because funding and resources can be very scarce. Getting the word out about your organization and how it makes a difference will help establish meaningful relationships that can help make a difference in the future.

What is Fundraising Success?

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In many of my blogs, I have discussed the overall ins-and-outs of fundraising. While there is a multitude of avenues and approaches I can continue highlighting, the one that I want to speak more about is the overall fundraising success of an organization. With the immense amount of stress and high standards for a campaign, it is easy to get lost within the day-to-day operations of the job. In fact, with the financial figures in our mind, many workers within the field measure their fundraising success simply by how much the organization was able to raise. In their minds, success is based on getting from figure $X to figure $Y where Y is greater than X. So a campaign is deemed more successful if the current figure is larger than the last year’s figure, right? In the grand scheme of things, getting that number ahead of last years is only half the battle. There are a multitude of factors that need to be taken into consideration before truly determining the overall success of a campaign. 

To start, there are two different types of money getting raised, unrestricted donations and highly restricted donations. Unrestricted donations are funds that an organization can leverage loosely. This can be funding for specific supplies for the foundation of the mission or specific operational cost for the organization as a whole. Whatever is the case, this financial funding is the oil that truly makes a nonprofit run. In comparison, highly restricted donations are those that have more limitations to their use. While they may be easier to raise, they are not necessarily the most impactful, especially if you are looking to grow a new entity of your nonprofit organization. Because of this, it is important to truly understand the overarching impact both financial donations can have on an organization.

In addition to the type of funding that is raised, you also have to consider a variety of other factors such as the starting point of a campaign, last years numbers, the necessary cost for future goals, and the overarching goal of the organization. Because of this, one question continues to come to mind: What is the true success of a fundraiser? In many ways, the answer is simple. While we analyze, breakdown, compare, and internalize the data of the fundraiser, it is all to translate whether or not that financial figure is enough to deliver the necessary resources of the nonprofit organization in executing its mission. At times, funding may not be as high as it was last year. While we would want to do whatever it takes to push that number higher, we have to realize the vision and goals of our philanthropic efforts. By asking that end-goal of ‘What is our mission?’ you will be able to determine an accurate figure that is representative in gauging the overall success of your campaign.

In addition to that, one piece of advice I like to give other people, especially those in the fundraising sector, is to celebrate the wins, even the small ones. When the results of all actions are taken into account, fundraising can be a very difficult and arduous task. To celebrate these victories, especially through the dark times, you will allow your and your team to persevere effectively, effectively and consistently to your campaign’s end-goal. In addition, there are fewer things more uplifting than knowing that you are creating something that will have a strong potential for change. Constantly keeping that your fundraiser’s mission in mind will help motivate and inspire you in eventually reaching that success.  

How to Improve your Crowdfunding Campaign

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Crowdfunding has become a widely popular tool for nonprofits and startups to utilize in raising capital for their organizations. Through online marketing, many of these individuals are able to leverage social media platforms in order to build a strong and collective support through family members, friends, businesses, and other people willing to help you reach your financial goals. Unlike traditional approaches where you would need to pitch an overall business plan and strategies to a limited yet wealthy pool of investors and institutions, crowdfunding sites allows organizations to meet their financial goals in an easy and timely manner.  

As great as these sites are, it is important that you are able to create a strong and marketable platform for your users. Just creating a site and writing a few sentences is not enough to gain traction, let alone for a nonprofit organization. Think about the brand of your organization. Ask yourself what you want them to take away when they see your organization’s profile page. These overarching questions will allow you frame your crowdfunding site in a more engaging way. Just because you are not meeting with these people does not mean you cannot engage with them on an emotional level.

To help you with this, I have tailored four vital tips in improving your crowdfunding campaigns. Be sure to optimize these areas.

Image Friendly and Interface Layout

When it comes to the landing page of your crowdfunding site, you want to make sure you have a combination of strong and attractive images and background color that brands the mission and identity of your nonprofit organization. Make sure your images are high quality and representative of what you want to showcase. In addition, be cautious of using extreme colors. You want to make sure the overall interface with your crowdfunding profile is easy on the eye. This will keep potential donors more on your page.

Featured Media

To establish a stronger emotional appeal, try creating a multimedia video presentation. Stay between the two-to-five minute marker. This will allow your viewers to understand your nonprofits goals and what they can do to help. In addition, try and play to the emotional side of your organization. People tend to donate mostly because of sentiment and connection than to the overall program itself.

The Balance of Information

On your page, you want to make sure you meet a balance of the amount of content you are putting on your page. First and foremost, you are still selling a pitch. Make sure your language is tailored in having your visitors ‘donate.’ Also provide a strong background of your organization and its mission. Lastly, make sure they understand where the money is going. Many donors have a sense of pride knowing they are giving to an organization that can help benefit the lives of other people. Showcase what you plan to do and how their efforts will help impact an individual. This type of emotional appeal can make a huge difference later on in reaching your fundraising goals.

Social Media Marketing

Remember, these campaigns require a strong amount of marketing effort on your end. Make sure you feature your crowdfunding campaign throughout a variety of social media platforms. Understand that some will allow for better viewing and traffic. Try and leverage Facebook and Twitter since both have a high concentration of engagement for these particular campaigns. Lastly, make sure you schedule this multiple times with a new message. The more organic and sincere you are, the better.

Three Main Goals You Should Know for your Fundraiser

o-GOAL-SETTING-facebook The world of fundraising and charities has long been shrouded in obscurity. While many of these foundations will boast of their transparency, it can oftentimes be too difficult to see whom the funds are for, where they are going, and what impact that they can have on the actual cause. We saw this back in 2010 with Mark Zuckerberg’s generous $100 million dollar donation to Newark Public Schools. I’m not saying we should stop donating. Instead I am saying that fundraisers, nonprofits, and charities need to be more visible and informative for the why, where, and what questions people will ask when donating for a cause.

At the end of the day, donors like to be reassured that their generous donation is making an impact on an individual’s life. That being said, below, I have laid out three main goals an organization should know for the betterment of its future. By internalizing these goals, you will be able to communicate and translate those numbers to understandable concepts for donors. Remember, the more informed they are, the more comfortable they will be to donate to your cause.

Know the Total Amount of Money Raised and Why

This is usually straight forward, but at the end of the day, you want to translate those numbers to something more understandable and comprehensive for the public. To do this, think backwards. By backwards planning, knowing your goal amount and creating steps to get there, you will be able to not just strategically plan for your goal, but also explain why you need that specific amount to various donors. At times, you will be looking for more lucrative donations. For this to happen, you need to be able to discuss why you need that amount and what that amount can do for your organization. We see this in shows like Shark Tank or on social media with GoFundMe promos. Make sure you know the desired amount and what it will be used for in the future. The more detailed you are the better.

Know the Number of Donors and Renewed Donors

The success of your fundraiser depends on just on the financial aspect, but also on the donor side. Make sure you know the number of donors who donated. You can do this monthly, quarterly, or yearly. Either way, you will be able to tract the overall system and progress your fundraising is doing and translate that back to the customer. The higher the donors, the better your charity looks to the public.

Know the Number of Renewed Donors

In addition to knowing the number of donors, make sure you are also aware of the donor retention rate. If you find that your retention rate is high, then that is definitely a fact you can capitalize in closing a deal for potential donors. One thing to note, renewed donors often increase to the cause. Many people find that type of commitment important before making donations on their own. Know this information and utilize it to its fullest.