Online Findings from the 2012 State of the Nonprofit Industry Report | npENGAGE

Online Findings from the 2012 State of the Nonprofit Industry Report

By on Oct 31, 2012


Last week the 2012 State of the Nonprofit Industry report was released and highlighted the importance of multichannel engagement for nonprofit fundraising success. I cherry-picked a few interesting highlights and shared them here on npENGAGE.

Today I’d like to look at some of the online-specific findings as well as share with you two personal stories and my hope for the 2013 State of the Nonprofit Industry report.

On the matter of giving online the report was clear, that online giving through the website or email marketing was small but growing. However in Australia, 20% of the nonprofits in the study reported that 25%+ of their funds were raised online.

Factors impacting online giving growth included:

  • Focus on improving the website
  • Increased awareness of online giving options
  • Cultural shift of online as an appropriate giving option
  • Ability of new technology to assist in raising more money.

Not surprisingly the topic of mobile engagement was of strong interest to respondents. Most participating organizations across all countries project a dramatic increase in mobile engagement. And in most cases the level of effort will more than double!!

Other observations include:

  • Two-thirds of the organizations will use at least one form of mobile engagement: responsive design for a mobile website, optimize email/donation forms, and QR codes.
  • Over 30% of nonprofits in New Zealand, Australia, France, and Canada have websites enabled for mobile browsing.
  • Interestingly 41% of respondents in the USA and Australia were or are planning on integration of mobile with their donor database. There should be a worry about as we add a channel we are now adding but another silo to segregate supporters from their organizations.

To the authors and sponsors of this report my thank you for the provocative insights into engagement across the nine countries.

This leads me to my two stories and one aspiration for the 2013 State of the Nonprofit Industry report.

My son, Matthew a college student at NYU, who I talk about in most of my speeches and presentations, spent most of this last summer in Accra studying as part of being a student at NYU. While there he met with Ghanaian citizens very engaged in building democracy in that country. After returning he returned to the USA the Ghanaian President John Mills passed away. Very quickly he and his global friends (Singapore, USA, Nigeria and Ghana) jumped on skype, facebook and posted on reddit the political changes and how this might impact NGO’s and democracy in Ghana.

A couple weeks ago in the New York Times, there was a story about a nonprofit in Mumbai, First Pasta Lane Neighborhood Association, which pressured local government in Mumbai to honor their promise to create open space for the residents in Amedkar Nagar slum. The Association was persistent, went to court and won their case.

The park exists now.

My request and I can also thank my good friend Sue Citro of The Nature Conservancy for teaching me this fact – the number and importance of non-governmental organizations is exploding in countries like India, Ghana, Brazil Russia, and Hong Kong.  The list of countries with vibrant nonprofits goes on and on. So I hope that next year we are able to work with partners to survey nonprofits in those countries to learn more about how they are leveraging mobile, peer-to-peer and social networking for fundraising and to deliver their missions.

We all have a lot to learn.


Dennis McCarthy, Director of Enterprise Sales at Target Analytics a Blackbaud company, has been serving nonprofits for more than 30 years in the design and implementation of integrated marketing solutions; and building and managing technology solutions for some of America’s largest and most complex nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining the Blackbaud team, Dennis managed Convio’s strategic services practice, comprised of consultants in business analytics, design and information architecture, Deployment Services and Agency Services. Prior to Convio, he worked at Epsilon as a general manager and deployed a successful custom CRM solution for a national health care organization with over 50 affiliates. He is married and has a great son who is a senior in college.

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