Sep 22, 2021

5 Hot Fall Fundraising Trends

woman-leaves-fall

It’s the middle of summer, and though we still have some time until fall, that doesn’t mean we can’t start talking about the exciting fundraising trends headed our way. After a year of virtual and socially distanced events and at-home appeals, we can expect a vibrant fall season colored by the new technologies that took hold during the 2020 lockdown. 

Here are five of the hottest trends you’ll want to incorporate into your fundraising plans right away:

1. Mobile Responsiveness

If you ventured out to eat during the pandemic, you may have noticed many restaurants have given up printed menus in favor of QR codes diners can scan to read the menu and even order their meals. This means that much of your donor base has become accustomed to using their smartphones to interact with the world around them over the past 18 months. So, now is the perfect time to consider digital response for your nonprofit. Try using QR codes or text message keywords to provide your donors with information, special opportunities or ways to give.

2. Snail Mail

More than ever, people are spending lots of time at home. Your nonprofit can tap into this with physical touch points such as postcards, to bring a little cheer into someone’s home. For the past 20 years, many nonprofit and for-profit companies have been moving away from direct mail and into email which has led to a glut of email in all our inboxes. A simple, well-done, sail mail piece can go a long way to help you connect with your donors—especially millennials and Gen-Z. Yes, people under 40 also love direct mail*.  Make sure to make your call-to-action mobile responsive–even though people like getting mail, returning an envelope is a practice that is not likely to resurge anytime soon.

3. Concise Messaging

Although direct mail is trending, digital outreach is here to stay. Short video content is particularly hot right now. The trend, initiated by TikTok and adapted by Instagram, will continue to move up the popularity scale, and not only among the younger target groups. If you choose to dip your toes into video content, make sure to keep content short. According to research, videos that are an average of 26 seconds receive the most comments on Instagram.** The focus on brevity should also roll over to your printed, email and online content. In these channels, keep your messaging short and sweet and use bullet points where you can. According to one study, the ideal length of an email is between 50 and 125 words!

4. Contactless Payments

While people may be starting to leave their houses more this fall, they are still going to remain cautious about germ transmission. That makes now the perfect time to try a contactless payment system at your fundraising events. Instead of sharing a pen with their neighbors to fill out a pledge card or swiping their credit cards on a machine that hundreds of others have used, your donors can pull out their personal smartphone and make their gift. You can also use contactless payments for raffle tickets, food and beverages and anything else for which your organization needs to collect payments.

5. Multiple Social Media Channels

Just a few years ago, social media fundraising was synonymous with Facebook. But, as Facebook faces increased legal scrutiny and controversy, the platform is beginning to fall out of favor for users. For nonprofits—especially smaller ones that cannot afford a robust social media team—it is becoming harder and harder to generate engagement with donors on Facebook. Users see between 1% and 5% of the content that is available to them on Facebook. That makes it increasingly expensive to generate enough engagement to increase awareness about your nonprofit. Now is the time to explore other platforms where you may be able to get more return on your outreach investment. Being able to increase organic reach on a variety of social media channels may go a long way to cement your nonprofit’s profile in your community and around the world.

These five hot trends are simple to put into action and should help your nonprofit build upon any recent success so you can continue to grow your mission. Don’t miss the opportunity to bring in more new donors and build meaningful relationships with your audience with these few actions this upcoming fall season.

Related

Men saluting in front of September 11 memorial
August 9, 2022

September 11: A Day to Remember, A Day To Serve

Do you remember where you were when you heard the news?  When graphic destruction played…

Read More
August 9, 2022

Kickstart Fall 2022 Fundraising

Crunchy, colorful leaves. Pumpkins. Football. Bonfires. Fall is in the air, and with it comes...

Read More
July 7, 2022

Budget-Friendly Peer-to-Peer Additions to Your Annual Event

It’s time to weigh your options and add peer-to-peer fundraising to your annual auction, gala,…

Read More
clients-B

What our clients say

We needed a platform to make sales online and to track and display ads for our sponsors. GiveSmart was perfect. We ended up making close to $15,000 more than we had hoped for. Definite better ROI than we anticipated. The interface is easy to use and provides plenty of options to get help if needed.

Michelle M.

The Rotary Club of South Whidbey Island

Using GS has created ease in auction bookkeeping, payments, and generating post-event thank you/tax letters. While we were online during COVID, our interactions with our GiveSmart via phone, email, and zoom were seamless. A representative always got back to us within the day. I would recommend GiveSmart to anyone doing a large online event.

Julie G.

MicroFinancing Partners in Africa

GiveSmart is highly flexible - you can use it for [a] simple registration and check-in, to full-scale galas with complex order forms, onsite upsells, live auctions, seating management, and more.

Jamie F.

Hope Chest for Breast Cancer

GiveSmart is easy to use and ideal for virtual events and can be used for in-person events to manage the silent auction, seating charts, and check-in to the event. Being able to use the platform for unlimited events within the contract year is very useful and being able to add other users and volunteers for different levels of access is helpful as well.

Dawn L.

Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County