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5 BBCON Sessions You Won’t Want to Miss

by Casey Neese

BBCON is Blackbaud’s annual technology conference for the global social good community. It will be taking place October 12-15, and this year’s event will be completely virtual. Registration is free and there is no need to travel, so it’s never been easier to attend and enjoy some informative and inspiring content.

The Charity Dynamics team has been eagerly reviewing the list of this year’s sessions, and we found these five sessions you shouldn’t miss.

How Blockchain Is Revolutionizing the Social Sector

Blockchain has been a persistent buzzword for some time now, but when this term appears, it usually elicits an array of questions. What is blockchain and how does it work? How could this technology be applied to the nonprofit sector? Are any charitable organizations using blockchain successfully?

This session promises to cut through the hype and discuss real use cases on how blockchain can provide increased revenue, financial efficiency, and better service delivery for nonprofits.

How SMS Has Helped One Organization Raise $8M

Short Message Service, better known as SMS, is a ubiquitous technology that allows the sending of text messages. Since this technology works on practically all mobile phone types and operating systems worldwide, there is enormous potential for charities to tap into SMS as a fundraising channel. While there have been some prominent success stories, many organizations have yet to crack the code for text-based fundraising success.

In this session, you can look forward to taking a deep dive into one recent successful SMS fundraising campaign and taking away new ideas for your organization’s own SMS initiatives.

The Great Reset: Recent Trends and the Road Ahead

If your organization is trying to understand the rapidly-changing world around you, you are not alone. Many organizations are now questioning whether the tried-and-true strategies of the past will be relevant in the “new normal.”

In this session, Blackbaud’s Ashley Thompson will dive into the trends that can help us better understand how philanthropy weathers major changes and share data points that lead to clues to what we can expect on the road ahead.

Bring Your Mission to Life with Your Digital Experience

The pandemic has led to a dramatic rise in virtual and hybrid fundraising events, and this has led many nonprofits to worry that their participants are missing out on experiencing their missions firsthand.

But as these digital experiences continue to evolve, they also present a new way to educate participants and inspire them to fundraise. In this session, experts from Charity Dynamics and MD Anderson Cancer Center will share how MD Anderson kept its mission front and center for the Boot Walk to End Cancer.

Picture This: A Story of Data Visualization

In many cases, the challenge today’s nonprofit leaders face isn’t a lack of data; the real challenge is making sense of the data we have. Today, we’re swimming in rivers of data that flow constantly from many sources, but how do we distill it down to a form that makes sense and provides actionable insight?

This year’s BBCON includes a number of promising data-focused sessions, but this one caught our eye because we believe in the power of data storytelling to refocus priorities and transform organizational cultures. In this session you will receive an overview of how data visualization works. You will also hear the story of how the Eastern Michigan University Foundation successfully transitioned to visual analytics and what happened when its fundraising data suddenly became more accessible and transparent.


Casey Neese is a Principal Consultant at Charity Dynamics

He hopes you enjoy your BBCON experience.