What Are The Biggest Fundraising Challenges for Charities in 2013?

Fundraising Survey ResultsRecently, I ran a survey asking charities about their main fundraising frustrations and challenges. The top 3 challenges were:

 

  • Managing Fundraising within Current Resources (42%)
  • Being able to take a strategic approach to fundraising (21%)
  • Finding Potential Funding (21%)

 

The vast majority said that, with regard to their resources, finding the time to fundraise was their biggest challenge (61%) closely followed by finding the time to invest in researching potential donors (44%).

I also asked what charities were going to focus on in 2013 when it came to fundraising and a huge 71% said that making their fundraising more strategic was their main priority.  This is encouraging as – if the main challenge is using resources effectively to fundraise – taking a strategic approach by planning and managing your fundraising effectively is by far the best way to determine how you should use resources to bring in the most money.  It’s also encouraging as, often, where resources are limited, strategy is the last thing on anyone’s mind – far behind bringing in the money.  And 9 times out of 10, it’s the first area that I recommend small non-profits look at in order to structure their fundraising to become more successful.

So taking into account what the main challenges and frustrations are, what are my top 3 recommendations to make your fundraising more successful?

 

  1. Plan – putting the structures in place to support fundraising – from taking a strategic approach to determining fundraising priorities to putting in procedures for thanking donors – having a systematic, well structured approach will help any small charity to fundraise more successfully.  Within the larger plan, you should also consider plans for fundraising activity and using social media (and you can get more ideas as to how to do this by signing up to download my Fundraising Toolkit)
  2. Use Your Networks – from staff to board members, look at who you know as an organisation.  Who are your partners, who else gives you funding?  Think about everyone who knows you and who is in their networks to help figure out where you can start to look for money.
  3. Leverage what you have – if you produce a members newsletter could you send it or adapt it for donors? Are you on social media and if so, could you use it to build an audience of potential future donors? What events do you run that donors could be invited to or that could become fundraisers for your charity? Look at your existing staff, are there opportunities to diversify their roles helping them to gain new skills and a different perspective of your charity by getting involved in fundraising?

 

Take a look at my Successful Fundraising video series to get more ideas to help your fundraising to become more strategic; make better use of your resources; and get ideas about where to look for potential donors.  And sign up to my regular fundraising tips and ideas – you get a free Fundraising Toolkit to download too – that’ll help boost your fundraising.