Fundraising decisions are based on many outcomes, but are we using the right measures? The largest expense of most nonprofits is also its greatest asset: people. The human capital cost behind events, campaigns, and even newsletters is large but often overlooked. More often, the efforts of nonprofit teams are undervalued in relation to program efficacy and success.
Ironically, the same idea is true when it comes to building sustainable funding for a cause. It should come as no surprise then that the greatest asset for most nonprofits is the individual giver. No, not the corporate sponsors or the foundation, and definitely not the annual gala or golf outing. When it comes to the best return on investment of time, energy, and even funds, an individual relationship with a top donor ranks higher than every other channel according to Stephen King, the founder of GrowthForce.
While nonprofit leaders might cringe over budgets or delay dealing with financial statements, the numbers often tell a story. When it comes to programming decisions or crafting appeals to donors, Stephen highly encourages nonprofit pros to make data-driven decisions that lead to outcome driven fundraising. With today’s technology, programs like Tsheets and even QuickBooks can help identify patterns. This will then determine efficacy when it comes to a nonprofit’s operations.
Katie and Stephen talk about the struggle that often arises with keeping donors engaged with sustaining existing programs. Rather than letting donors with a penchant for “new and novel” drive program decisions, Steven encourages the use of program data. This will steer philanthropy toward the programs with the greatest demonstrable outcomes.
Using the numbers to tell your organization’s story will help even easily distracted donors recognize the impact their helping create.
From tech founder to nonprofit CFO and fundraiser, Stephen King brings a unique combination of vision, foresight, and experience to help nonprofits maximize their cash flow and operational efficiency. He’s been a dedicated board member of many nonprofit organizations—including seven years working for Amnesty International USA—where he was the Director of Development and Chief Financial Officer. Stephen’s time at Amnesty reinforced his life-long commitment to giving back to the community through charitable causes. Regarded as one of the accounting industry’s top thought leaders, he’s currently serving as President & CEO of GrowthForce, a heart-centered company with specialized teams providing accounting for nonprofits.