Ann C. Fitzgerald, President
Is a fundraising plan critical to success? Yes, according to a new study of nonprofit organizations.
The Association of Fundraising Professionals reported on a recent study by Third Space Studio, which found that for nonprofits with budgets under $2 million:
- Every $1 increase in salary for a group’s fundraiser led to an average increase in income of $4.25. For groups without a plan, there was no correlation between salary and fundraising results.
- Devoting more staff time to individual donors led to more donations. Each full-time person working on individual donor fundraising raised an average of $280,000. People working 25% of their time on individual donor fundraising raised an average of $70,000. For organizations without a plan, there was no correlation between staff time and fundraising results.
- Face-to-face meeting with current and potential donors resulted in increased donations. Every donor meeting led to an average individual donor revenue increase of $5,000. (Not every donor gave $5,000; rather, total revenue went up by $5,000.) If an organization did not have a plan, there was no correlation between donor meetings and revenue.
The results are consistent: investing additional time and resources into development won’t show impact unless you start with a plan. So maybe “winging it” isn’t such a good idea. If you’d like help preparing a fundraising plan, contact us.
Ann C. Fitzgerald is Founder and President of AC Fitzgerald, using her decades of experience in fundraising, management, leadership, and sales to help nonprofits build their capacity and achieve success. She is a sought-after speaker, writer, and advisor.