The benefits of online giving are two-fold. First, raising funds over the internet is generally cheap and without risk. The second hidden benefit is the potential to reach out to new donors and supporters. This potential has immensely increased with the ease of online sharing. If donors give to an organization that they support, then they are likely to share their donation with their friends by posting it in their online social network. How will this bring in new donors and supporters? Let’s refer back to the Millennial Donors Survey.
If you already have a compelling cause, you will be happy to know that a compelling cause is what motivates 85% of donations. But, how do you turn your compelling cause and initial donations into a viral fundraising campaign? 52% of those who gave to an organization were prompted by a family member and 42% were prompted by a friend, creating what we call donor sharing. If people are already attracted to your cause, they will want your cause to be successful so that their donation can actually make a difference. If the donors share the cause with a family member, they are helping ensure that their donation goes to a successful campaign by broadening your pool of potential donors. Their desire to share broadens your donor base and your support network. This is the hidden benefit to online giving and donor sharing. With traditional donations, you can only hope that the person who made a donation spreads your cause through word of mouth. With online giving, sharing your cause with thousands of people is only a click away. Getting people to actually donate and share is the tricky part, but it is something I will cover soon in an article about crowdfunding.