Do you use technology in your fundraising? Or do you tend to stick with the tried and tested methods you’ve used for years? I’m not suggesting that there’s a right answer to either of those questions – and there’s definitely not a ‘one size fits all’ approach.
Some charities will find that sticking to direct mail, for example, is the best approach for them and continues to deliver the best results. However, others may find that by using new technology to reach audiences, they are able to find new donors and enhance the work they do.
Fundraising Coach, Marc A. Pitman is based in the US and recently highlighted the use of QR codes in fundraising. This fascinating (and relatively simple) technology can be used to direct donors to specific web pages, provide direct links to event booking sites, link potential donors to audio and video clips – and a whole range of other uses that could enhance your donor communications – Marc even demonstrates how to do this on his site.
Of course, the audiences you are trying to reach do need to be familiar with the technology (otherwise, it’s just a squiggle in the corner of a poster!) but I’ve no doubt that, as this technology grows, it will be picked up and used more and more. Four weeks ago, I’d never even heard of it and now I’ve read numerous articles about how it is being used in both the US and the UK. Oxfam have recently started using QR codes to link to audio clips of the previous owners of items in their shops telling the story of their donated items.
Another new innovation enhancing the power of the web is crowdfunding – or crowdsourcing, which is effectively, using people to get things done. Charites, arts and social enterprises could harness the power of the virtual crowd to fund their programmes, provide their set up costs or fund specific projects, as Suzy Rigg’s recent post on ACEInspire’s blog demonstrates.
But what about your organisation? Do you blog, tweet or ask people to ‘Like’ you on Facebook? Or are you going down the route of QR codes and crowdfunding to reach new audiences and encourage new routes to giving?