Learn about the best ways nonprofits can cultivate more donors and increase donations using nonprofit big data techniques.
In order for a nonprofit to achieve its mission, they must raise awareness and funds. What makes not-for-profit organizations similar to for-profit businesses is marketing. Marketing plays a key role for nonprofits and businesses.
Nonprofits achieve their goals by cultivating more donors to increase donations using nonprofit big data. Keeping up with the latest and greatest marketing tools and strategies is essential for nonprofit organizations. Let’s start with what not-for-profit organizations can learn from what for-profit businesses use to predict future trends – Big Data.
How Nonprofit Big Data Can Increase Donations
You may be wondering – what is the big deal about big data and why should I care? Big data simply means using computers to find trends in enormous collections of data. Why is this important for nonprofit organizations?
Heather Yandow of Third Space Studios recently conducted a big data analysis on individual donor gift giving trends for nonprofits with smaller nonprofits. She started this project to help small and mighty organizations understand their fundraising success and opportunities for improvement.
What made her study so significant was that her a well-researched report documented individual donor benchmarks for nonprofits with a budget size under $2 million! Most studies of this nature focus on larger organizations with bigger budgets. The most surprising thing Yandow and her team learned was that they saw the hugest gains from online gift giving. Nonprofit organizations that took advantage of online giving tools saw the biggest increase.
Her research also uncovered two big fundraising opportunities that nonprofits should invest in right away – Recurring giving and larger gifts.
Three False Assumptions Looming Behind Big Data
Yandow’s report reinforced the fact that nonprofits need big data to reveal more fundraising, marketing and management opportunities. But before your organization dives into big data, pay attention to these three false assumptions:
- Your Data Is Up-To-Date and Complete – That is an extremely misleading and false assumption. Your organization must be vigilant to the fact that you are only as good as your data. That means that your data must be well attended to and stay up to date. If your data is not updated, your results will be skewed.
- Your Data Tells the Complete Story – That can lead to trouble if you don’t consider your data in relation to other studies, trends and communication. In other words don’t just rely completely on your data. Stay in tune with other variables.
- Bigger Data is Better – Before you invest in big data analysis, stop and ask yourself what are your requirements for telling your story. Communicating your story is the basis of raising awareness for your mission and raising funds.
Better Data, Better Decisions, Better World
As John F. Kennedy so eloquently put it:
Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.
What does this mean for nonprofit? It means that better data will lead to better decisions and better decisions can help lead to a better world. Nurturing and analyzing your data is the key to understanding trends and opportunities for your nonprofit organization.
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