In our future: Focus on donors?

Maybe you’ve seen the discussion that’s making the rounds about how fundraising might change in the next ten years. The central question many are tackling is How will donors be different in 2020 and how will they be the same?


Ken Burnett takes a swing at the question at 2020 vision: What might be the future for fundraising? Interestingly, he looks more at fundraisers than at donors, and makes this prediction:



Fundraisers will wake up to the fact that they are selling neither their organizations nor their causes, nor their missions and certainly not all the nuts and bolts and insignificant minutiae of what they do. Rather they are promoting joy, the warm glow, the exhilaration, the sense of achievement and fulfillment, even the meaning of life. As business life and political life are so discredited now, the timing for all this could not be better now.

Hey, if even a few more fundraisers figure that out, we’ll raise a lot more money, enrich a lot more donors’ lives, and fund a lot more good deeds.


So I hope Ken is right.


I personally know quite a few organizations that are already thinking this way, and many more that are heading in this direction. But far too many fundraisers are trapped in a fundraising model that’s all about them, and not about their donors.


My little 2020 prediction: Some of the world’s best-known and largest nonprofit organizations will disappear by the year 2020 because they couldn’t master the art of actually speaking to donors.


Thanks to The Agitator for the tip, along with some cogent thoughts on these things.


Comments

2 responses to “In our future: Focus on donors?”

  1. Personally, I find it really helpful to think of my job as selling “the meaning of life.” Ken is right; those of us who can actually do it will cut right through the rest of the noise that our audience is tuning out.

  2. Personally, I find it really helpful to think of my job as selling “the meaning of life.” Ken is right; those of us who can actually do it will cut right through the rest of the noise that our audience is tuning out.

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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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