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5 Ways Nonprofits Must Adapt to the Modern Giving World

5 Ways Nonprofits Must Adapt to the Modern Giving World



A glimpse into the modern giving world and why nonprofits need to adapt.


When one thinks of the word “modern,” oftentimes it is associated with technology, change, something completely new and maybe even something complex that innovates processes for the better. However, modern doesn’t always have to mean complex. For a nonprofit organization seeking to ensure its longevity going forward, adapting to the modern world of giving can mean simple changes that can help attract a younger generation of donors.

One of the core elements of the modern world of giving is trust, which presents an opportunity for nonprofit organizations to adopt donor engagement solutions that enhance public trust. The report 11 Trends in Philanthropy for 2021 finds that people grant trust based on “competence (delivering on promises) and ethical behavior (doing the right thing and working to improve society).” This means that to enhance donor trust, nonprofits need to adopt innovative practices that improve society as well as display competence by showing donors the tangible results of their contribution(s).

When it comes to nonprofits and the importance of adapting to attract donors, the reasoning comes down to three essential points. First, as nonprofit organizations seek to spread positive impact for years to come - they need to begin to engage a new generation of donors (mainly Gen Z and Millenials, who are increasingly involved in charitable giving) to sustain their impact. Second, as the world shifts to remote, organizations have a unique opportunity to not be confined by their geographic location. For nonprofits, this means being able to get donations and deliver impact outside physical borders through an online giving experience. For example, 31% of younger donors are more open to giving beyond their local environment. And finally, nonprofit organizations should prioritize innovation at the forefront of their operations, as being stagnant can cause them to fall behind changes in the environment - from digital giving to what a younger generation of donors wants.

However, prior to beginning on this journey one of the most important things an organization must do is embrace an innovative mindset that focuses on how things can be improved rather than being stuck in how things have always been. Think outside the box one step at a time! Here are 5 actionable ways your organization can begin to adapt and implement change today.

  1. Practice transparent donor relations rooted in impact: Donors today value organizations that show the tangible impact their donation can have, as they want to feel they made a positive difference for a community in need. This requires increasing transparency around things like showing how their support directly impacts the community and in post-donation communications to donors on the tangible results of your programs or projects.
  2. Optimize your back-end processes for longevity: Constantly look for ways your organization can save time and resources so that you can make the most of your resources and budget. For instance, implement organizational tools that make it easy to list needs and manage donations.
  3. Craft online-giving experiences and meet donors where they are: Post COVID-19 (and even in recent years), organizations must embrace the reality that younger donors prefer giving online as it allows them to deliver impact quickly or from the comfort of their own home. For organizations this means being flexible in accepting newer online forms of payments (i.e. PayPal, Stripe) and offering remote giving and engagement opportunities.
  4. Engage donors to feel impact with innovative giving opportunities: Empowering a donor in more than one way to give back to your organization (i.e. through a product, service, or monetary donation) allows donors to contribute and engage with your work in any way they can. This requires integrating unique ways for your donors to support you and acts as a first step to building a long-lasting relationship with them.
  5. Diversify your online reach to build credibility and awareness: Being more active on different online channels allows your organization to be easily discovered by potential donors, and brings awareness to the impact you are trying to make. This can tie-back to building credibility, for example, by sharing impact statistics on online channels such as TikTok, Instagram, and Twitch, which align with younger audiences.

Don’t know how to take the first step? Well, we’ve got you covered! Geenees strives to offer a platform that strengthens your organization and empowers you to continue delivering a positive impact for your stakeholders who need it most.

Learn more by attending an info-session or get listed on Geenees today! Also, make sure to access your FREE 10-step checklist on how to engage and attract younger generations.


Guest contributions represent the personal opinions and insights of the authors and may not reflect the views or opinions of Imagine Canada.

Libi is a woman entrepreneur, experienced leader, and operations executive on a mission to help those who need it most through her innovative platform Geenees. Geenees is leading the new-age of giving by empowering nonprofit organizations to upscale and attract new generations of donors.  

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