Diversity Changing Fundraising Methods

The changing culture of America has created a wave of change in the nature of donors and their expectations of an organization.

During a session at a recent nonprofit industry conference in Washington D.C, Susan Raymond, executive vice president of Changing Our World, Inc., gave a talk addressing the changing field of attracting donors called “Innovation in the Nonprofit Marketplace: Strategic and Operational Needs.” Raymond focused heavily on the changing demographics of donors through race, gender, and age.

Demographic changes mean that American adults, and their giving, will be increasingly diverse. Here are some stats:

  • Diversity is everywhere in the United States. Even small town and rural populations have changed by more than 40 percent for people of Hispanic descent and people of two or more races;
  • Today’s 60-year-old woman got her BA in 1970 when only 45 percent of women graduating from high school attended college compared to today’s nearly 75 percent. This rise in education leads to an effect in employment, professions, and wealth;
  • In 2011, 38% of married women had a higher income than their husbands;
  • Wealth is increasingly earned and not inherited, especially among the young, as only 8% of the wealthy under 50 inherited their wealth; and,
  • In 2012, $1.1 Billion in new major gifts came from billionaires under the age of 40.

With demographics changing heavily, what methods they use to give also changes.

  • 87% of respondents of a Giving USA survey in 2013 stated that they used online fundraising methods;
  • In 2013, Online giving grew by 13.5% while overall charitable giving grew by 4.9%; and,
  • Social networking and cell phone data suggest that people of Hispanic descent use digital media more than their minority counterparts.

With the changing demographic of donors, nonprofits must be aware of who is giving and how they are giving in order to best appeal to donors and keep up in a competitive marketplace.