Charity Dynamics Study Shows Independent Fundraising Event Driven by Donor Happiness and Engagement

Charity Dynamics Study Shows Independent Fundraising Event Driven by Donor Happiness and Engagement

57% of respondents launched IFEs with donor happiness primary motivator

AUSTIN, Texas (February 25, 2014) – Charity Dynamics today released the findings of its Independent Fundraising Event (IFE) Study demonstrating the emergence of IFEs as a core strategy for allowing donors to drive their engagement and support avenues. IFEs, also known as DIY fundraising, are donor-led peer-to-peer initiatives and often include virtual events, tribute campaigns or other grassroots activities.

More than half (57%) of organizations with existing IFE programs cite factors related to donor happiness or engagement as the driving forces behind their programs. Specific responses include “match the personal interests and passions of key volunteers” and “allow people to participate in a way that works for them.”

“As donors expect to have philanthropic activities as personalized as consumer activities, leading nonprofits are responding through IFE programs,” says Donna Wilkins, Charity Dynamics CEO and Founder. “This feasibly allows for individualized donor experiences that strengthen the donor’s relationship, improve satisfaction and increase retention.”

Other key findings from the report include

  • IFE revenue growth is expected to be high. 63% of nonprofit professionals expect their IFE programs to grow by 10% or more annually, with 25% expecting 20% or more annual growth.
  • The outlook for new IFE programs is also strong. Of organizations planning to launch an IFE program, 29% expect first year revenue of $100,000 or more. Even stronger, 6% expect to raise $1million or more.
  • IFEs exist broadly across the nonprofit sector. IFE programs are operated by 42% of organizations, with 53% of those having programs for four or more years. Additionally, 25% of organizations are planning to launch an IFE program.
  • The open model is the most common program structure. 60% of organizations employ the open model for the IFE programs. The hub model is the second most popular and used by 27% of organizations.
  • Staffing, conceptual development and technology are leading considerations when launching a program. Budget and technology integration and usability were also common considerations.

Further supporting the study’s findings is last year’s Nonprofit Donor Engagement Study which demonstrated the prevalence of peer-to-peer fundraising. In that study 40% of donors reported encouraging their friends and family to donate to their favorite charity at least a few times per year and 29% actively fundraise on behalf of their favorite charity annually.

“Fundraising is at its best when it is engaging, personalized and donor-centric, which is exactly why IFEs are successful,” says Matthew Mielcarek, Charity Dynamics Vice President of Creative and Strategy. “We’re seeing excellent donor enthusiasm among the clients whose IFE programs we currently support and look forward to expanding those results to new programs and organizations.”

The Independent Fundraising Event (IFE) Study is being presented today at the Run Walk Ride Conference. A similar presentation is also available via webinar on March 5. The study can be downloaded for free at https://my.charitydynamics.com/IFEStudy.html.

About Charity Dynamics (@CharityDynamics)
Charity Dynamics provides comprehensive online marketing and fundraising solutions for nonprofit organizations. The company’s expert consulting services enable nonprofits to create and implement results-driven fundraising strategies through online programs, live and virtual events, social media and mobile solutions. Organizations using Charity Dynamics’ innovative Boundless Fundraising® solution have raised more than $250 million directly through the suite of applications since it launched in late 2008. Charity Dynamics’ supports 25 of the Top Run Walk Ride events and works with leading nonprofits including The ALS Association, American Cancer Society, National Multiple Sclerosis Society and The Salvation Army. For more information, please visit www.charitydynamics.com.