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Fundraising products and strategy insights

It’s been a tough few years in the charity sector, which means that now more than ever, it’s important to ensure your fundraising strategy works hard for you.

Well, look no further. In this blog post, we’ve reviewed the data from our Individual Giving Fundraising Survey results and the associated discussions during to uncover key fundraising strategy insights.

We've got an exciting set of results to share with you all around the different fundraising products and strategies that have been driving success for charities.

A particular thank you to the panel of The Lowdown webinar for sharing their experience, thoughts and opinions during the session, some of which are captured here:

Helen Daw, Head of Data Strategy and Insights, Woods Valldata

Rufus Cruft, Director of Fundraising, Royal British Legion

Jo Howard, Global Head of Direct Marketing, Sightsavers

Poppy Obokoh, Individual Giving Manager – Retention, The Air Ambulance Service

Let's dive straight into the heart of it, shall we? Helen's presentation on fundraising products sparked an engaging discussion that unveiled some fascinating trends...

Fundraising strategy and products insights in individual giving fundraising

Understanding the fundraising products landscape

Helen, with her characteristic enthusiasm, guided us through the survey results, highlighting the most critical fundraising products that charities employed. Regular giving, legacy, and cash appeals emerged as the top three champions driving income, aligning seamlessly with the collective poll responses from the webinar.

What's particularly interesting is the consistency in the lineup of essential products year on year. Regular giving, cash appeals, and legacy continue to maintain their dominant positions, painting a picture of stability and reliability in fundraising efforts.

Yet, amidst this constancy, there were intriguing shifts. The data revealed a slight decline in cash appeals and emergency appeals compared to previous years. Simultaneously, there was a surge in the importance of weekly lottery and raffle, signalling a rise in prize-led fundraising approaches.

“Prize-led fundraising has been quite important as a fundraising product this year and into the future.” Helen Daw

The evolution of acquisition strategies

The panel agreed with the results. We discussed the continuing importance of cash appeals for in-year income, but, as Poppy explained, it’s important to also look at other ways supporters can give.

“I think cash appeals are always going to be there, and especially in acquisition, but we are looking at other ways for supporters to give to us.” Poppy Obokoh

Rufus explained that different products lend themselves better to different demographic groups. So, it’s important to continue cash and raffle – even though with an aging supporter base donating this way, numbers are declining. But alongside that, fundraisers need to be looking at ways to attract and nurture the next generation.

Jo introduced a different perspective again, saying cash giving has been successful through channels such as DRTV and digital – with a change in the split between regular giving and cash giving on these channels, much more in the favour of cash. The challenge is in how to integrate those cash givers into the programme and build a relationship with them outside of their initial gift.

“We're also seeing a lot more cash giving via TV - we've got quite a big DRTV program. And we're seeing much more cash giving to TV than we've ever we've ever seen before. We’re having to be much more agile about how we integrate these people into our programme.” Jo Howard

Crafting effective legacy programmes

Legacy giving, a pivotal aspect for sustained funding, sparked an engaging discussion. Jo highlighted the surprising success of raffle-based acquisition for legacies, emphasising the shift in donor demographics.

She felt that the UK public and fundraisers were more open than ever to talking about, and asking about, legacies. All felt that including legacy in existing asks was important, but also running specific legacy campaigns.

“The way to acquire legacy supporters is to do a legacy ask and have a clear legacy proposition – that can really lead to those numbers of legacy supporters.” Rufus Cruft

Poppy and Jo shared cost-effective yet impactful strategies for smaller charities, including leveraging supporter magazines and embedding legacy messaging into various communications. Rufus proposed exploring free will writing offers as tangible, cost-effective methods to boost legacy contributions.

Wrapping up the insights

As the discussion drew to a close, the collective insights from our panellists underlined the significance of agility, diversification, and embracing digital avenues in fundraising product strategies.

They emphasised the need to create a supportive culture around legacy conversations while adapting approaches to align with changing donor landscapes.

Our main take-outs are:

  • Regular giving, cash appeals, and legacy are the most important products for individual giving fundraising.
  • Different and changing demographics need a different and changing product approach – including follow-up retention and stewardship approaches.
  • Nurture supporters. Give them opportunities to support in different ways. Just because they don’t give again to the same product doesn’t mean they’re no longer supporting the charity

Summary

In conclusion, the Lowdown on Individual Giving Insights has illuminated the evolving landscape of fundraising products and strategies. It's a testament to the resilience and adaptability of charities in navigating the dynamic world of fundraising.

Thank you for joining us in unravelling these compelling insights – and if you’d like to be the first to hear about our latest news and views, why not to hear about new blogs as they’re released.

About Woods Valldata

At Woods Valldata, we’re Partners in Possibility. That means we're passionate about people, partnerships, and what can be achieved when we do great things together.

We offer charities a full spectrum of outsourced fundraising services with our own people, processes, technical capabilities, and breadth of expertise in house. This means thatyou know the service you get is always the very best it can be.

Whatever you want when you outsource your fundraising programmes, whether insight, strategy and innovation driving growth, or reliable processes and continuous improvements delivering faster and more accurate banking, thanking and fulfilment, at Woods Valldata you can count on us to make your supporters feel appreciated and elevate your ability to achieve more.

Basically, we’re here for you and there for your supporters. In fact, we partner with over 100 charities providing outsourced fundraising services across:

  • Weekly lottery from our bespoke Advantage offering, Aspire platform, and our ever-popular entry level lottery suitable for charities of all sizes and budgets, Affinity Lottery.
  • End to end charity raffle from design, print and post to response handling, reporting and strategy.
  • For your large-scale appeals.
  • Expert fulfilment, whether that's a thank you message through to challenge pack sponsorships and memberships.
  • Direct Debit management, which means you can rely on us for your regular giving banking.
  • And data strategy and insight to enhance your programmes and achieve more.

We’d love to talk to you about your individual giving fundraising and where we can achieve great things together.

To learn more about Woods Valldata and we can support you in your individual giving fundraising, contact our team today.

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