Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center – Digital Fundraising

Project Description

For years, Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center (OSUWMC) had concentrated its successful development efforts on traditional channels such as personal solicitation, community-based events and Annual Fund direct mail. As a result, digital fundraising and engagement had received minimal attention, and were not viewed as core to the development efforts of OSUWMC. In light of an overhaul of the Medical Center’s 200+ web properties and the launch of a major Capital Campaign, the organization decided to embark on creating its first-ever digital fundraising strategy that complemented the broader institution’s marketing and educational goals.

Project Details

Client Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center
Skills Strategy, Fundraising
View medicalcenter.osu.edu

Challenge

  • Past focus on traditional fundraising channels meant that little attention was paid to the organization’s digital fundraising or engagement
  • Beyond annual dollars raised online, OSUWMC did not have data or metrics—let alone staff—for digital strategy and fundraising
  • Needed to adhere to the large university’s branding, technology, and business rules, while also taking into account the institution’s marketing and educational goals

Approach

  • A Charity Dynamics Strategy Consultant conducted a comprehensive Digital Fundraising Audit that spanned documenting and evaluating existing staffing, technology tools, and business processes, and then used results to suggest investments required to build a successful and sustainable program
  • OSUWMC relied on Charity Dynamics to implement some early tactical recommendations, including the implementation of online peer-to-peer community event software that integrated with the larger institution’s database and web-based Year End fundraising promotions.
  • Leveraged Charity Dynamics’ expertise in the Health and Hospital vertical, as well as its extensive experience dealing with large, complex organizations, to set realistic expectations and define a set of metrics around program success

Outcome

  • OSUWMC doubled its year-end giving to key unrestricted funds, and the organization’s flagship Cancer Center fund experienced a 122 percent increase in the number of gifts and a 137 percent jump in total giving.
  • Had a solid foundation and road map upon which to build a successful and sustainable fundraising program, and identified opportunities to serve as an “early adopter” of University-wide digital tools and practices
  • Decreased anticipated investment in online tools without negatively impacting growth projections by creating an action plan that was based on a deep understanding of the organization’s goals and the existing landscape of the larger institution

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