As demand on service increases for many charities and income generation remains an uphill struggle, charities and fundraisers recognise they need to diversify and often modernise their fundraising methods.
‘Charities should identify all potential sources of income before deciding which are relevant and achievable. Are they making the most of their properties and any investments held? Developing a disaster contingency framework will help them to cope with the unforeseen.’
CAF surveys charity leaders annually to understand the challenges they face, and to assess the impact these challenges have on the sector’s ability to meet their beneficiaries’ needs. In 2019 charity leaders told CAF they continue to operate in a difficult environment:
and they recognise the impact this has on their fundraisers’ ability to generate income. As Dan Fluskey, Head of Policy and External Affairs, Institute of Fundraising explains,
‘Fundraising does not happen in a bubble, we are part of a wider context and environment that continuously shapes and influences our work. The potential for the economic situation to lead to fewer donations is a real concern … While there is little that fundraisers can do to change the economy, there are things that we can do to be in the best possible place to respond to external challenges.’
Dan Fluskey, Institute of Fundraising
Many charities and fundraisers are working hard to deliver growth. The majority of charities who responded to THINK Benchmarker’s 2019 report had achieved positive results; most had attained overall growth of 10% or more.
Organisations that grew income last year told Blackbaud Europe and the Institute of Fundraising their growth was driven by three key factors, as part of an over all fundraising strategy:
‘Having a clear strategy and plan is more important than ever, and – learning from what respondents said was a reason for success in meeting and exceeding their targets – trying new and different things is key.’
So, at the beginning of a new year and a new decade, is it time to consider new and innovative fundraising methods?
‘Charities should be at the centre of technological change. Charities working across different sectors, borders and issues should embrace the role of technology. [They should] seek out passionate employees to help demonstrate the potential for charities and those developing new technologies to work together. We recommend that the Government recognise that charities have a vital role to play in ensuring that new technologies are developed and implemented ethically. [Government needs] to be brought into the debate about the future of technology.’
Cue new generation FundStar, an innovative fundraising service that helps UK charities face embrace the latest digital developments, in an easy, effective and smart way.
FundStar offers effective resourcing through our new virtual fundraising assistant. This is good news for charities suffering declining income; according to Blackbaud and the IoF’s report, when trying to understand where their organisation’s income had declined, the most probable reasons were a lack of skills and adequate resources.
41% of respondents admitted they didn’t have enough people with the right balance of skills in their fundraising teams. At just 40p per hour, Percy, our new virtual fundraising assistant, is cheaper than your average fundraiser. How many fundraisers work 24/7, always on time, never ill or on holiday? At a fraction of the cost of recruiting a new member of staff, Percy ensures lots and lots of money is raised for your charity without extra workload. He’ll tick along in the background, raising large numbers of small donations from your supporters, allowing your fundraising team to focus on the strategically important tasks.
If you are ready to invest in an innovative, cost effective fundraising service this new year, get in touch. We can’t wait to help you grow your income at very little cost to your charity.