Your destination for insight into the world of event fundraising, charity auctions and no-risk travel packages.
Doesn't it feel like 2017 just began? Yet Halloween, the end of Daylight Savings and even Thanksgiving are right around the corner. With nearly one third of all nonprofit donations occuring in December alone, it's important to execute a strategic year-end giving campaign that maximizes your impact over the next two months.
To maximize your live auction revenue, it's important to cater every item to just the top 5 percent of spenders. One bona fide way to "feed" this top tier of spenders: Offer luxury travel in the auction. Did you know the luxury travel sector is growing almost a third faster than the overall travel industry?
Have you noticed an increase in online donations lately? As our lives become more and more intertwined with technology (employee microchipping, anyone?), the way we support charity is no exception.
"How many auction items do you recommend for a fundraising event with X amount of guests?" This is a question we get all the time, and for good reason. Include too many, and the items will fetch fewer, smaller bids. Including too few may drive bids higher, but you've lost out on revenue bidders would have spent on more items. Perhaps there's a better question to ask: How many auction items will we need to meet our fundraising goal? Most nonprofits look at audience size to determine how many items they need in the auction (more on that below), but today we'll use an equally important metric: your fundraising goal. Fact is, the quality of your items can affect the quantity you need to procure. Using a few simple formulas, you can break down any revenue goal—no matter how insurmountable it may seem—into the approximate amount and caliber of items needed. To deduce your event's "magic number" of auction items, check out our handy infographic below.
Have you heard? There is a massive travel budget, or money that people set aside each year for vacations, in North America. According to American Express, well over half of Americans have a travel budget (and we all know that percentage is probably much higher among the guests at a typical charity fundraiser). In fact, a whopping $600 billion is spent on leisure travel each year! For many nonprofits, offering travel in the auction opens the door to a whole new revenue stream—travel budgets completely separate from a donor's 'philanthropic' budget. We could certainly use access to more revenue streams, but I don't think our audience really has the money to buy trips. Valid point. But if you've never offered travel at your fundraising event before, you may be underestimating the giving power and travel budgets of your audience. Surveys show 83% of winning bidders budget $5,000 annually for travel. What's more, 53% budget at least $10,000 per year for vacations. What this means for your nonprofit: An overwhelming majority of your audience has set aside money to spend on a vacation package that they'll spend one way or another... whether through your fundraising event or with a travel agent. Okay, some people in our audience are probably buying at least one trip this year. How do we know where they want to go? While some cities and attractions maintain popularity year after year (think Hawaii and NYC), there are new, up-and-coming destinations and activities poised to become big winners at fundraising auctions this fall. Check out our infographic highlighting the biggest travel trends of 2016 (spa day, anyone?), then learn how to quickly and easily reserve Winspire Experiences that cater to any niche traveler.
With a limited number of fundraising events each year, it is important for nonprofits to choose events that will maximize their revenue while minimizing their expenses. A survey by Software Advice of roughly 100 nonprofits who had conducted at least one major fundraising event event in the past year showed that while Fun Runs/Walks can be an easy revenue generator, charity auction events still generate the most money.
Donating both time and money has long been an integral part of American society. According to the World Giving Index, the United States was the only country to rank in the top 10 in 2014 for each of the three categories they use to measure charitable behavior, including volunteering time, donating money, and helping strangers. The National Philanthropic Trust states that 95.4% of U.S. households donate to charities, with each household’s average annual donation a robust $2,974. Total U.S. donations to charity amounted to $331 billion in 2013, with 72% of that coming from individual donations. Below we look at charitable giving trends by state. The top five most charitable states are located in the middle of the country, with Utah ranking #1 overall and ranking near the top in just about every measurement of charitable giving. Interestingly, other than the consistently strong showing of Utah, there is quite a bit of diversity in the states that ranked high in each metric below. Click here to view the infographic ↓
Millennials. Tired of hearing that word yet? Well we're not going anywhere (yes I am a millennial). Defined as the age group born between 1980-1999, this cohort of 'youngsters' is quickly growing in influence as they begin to take on more leadership roles at work and increase their spending power. There are approximately 80 million millennials in the United States, and by 2017, this age group will account for more total charitable donations than any other age group. The giving trends among millennials show that philanthropy is pervasive in this age group with 93% of millennials donating to charity in 2010. As this age group continues to enhance their wealth through career growth, the total value of these donations will balloon to immense proportions - which is great news! With such a large and growing sector of donors, it is important for non-profits to understand this demographic and cater their outreach efforts to the preferences of 20-30 year olds. Remember, these young adults grew up with technology and most notably - the internet. So it's no surprise that the first place they go to educate themselves about a cause is to an organization's website. It's also no surprise that they prefer to donate online through a website over any other donation method. Furthermore, they are all completely glued to their smartphones. Which means they will likely be visiting your site using a mobile device, so make sure your website is mobile responsive and can be easily viewed and navigated using a smartphone's internet browser. For more info on mobile responsive and how to build a website for this future generation, check out the "Positive User Experience" section of this article. For an example, try checking out Winspire News on your phone right now. Below is an infographic with some more great stats on millennial giving trends. Check it out!
By Beth Kanter in her blog Bethkanter.org In 2013, social media will continue the trend of “going visual.” More and more nonprofits are adding data visualization to compelling story telling to create amazing infographics as part their marketing tool kits. For a quick primer on infographics, see “Five Infographics To Master Infographics in Five Minutes.” If you have decided that your nonprofit going to go visual in 2013, figure out your goal. Infographics can be used in different and creative ways and some obvious ones such as marketing messaging, educating about a social issue, to celebrate a successful campaign, to report to stakeholders on key performance metrics, an annual report, and even a marriage proposal! Need some more ideas? Check out my pinterest board “Nonprofit Infographics.” Before you hire a designer, work with your in-house design or do it yourself, it is a good idea to identify the goal, audience, data, and key message that you to communicate. Your graphic designer will certainly help you refine this initial idea.