Digital Fundraising Day Recap – Strategy

The first in a three-part series recapping the webinars, podcasts and videos from Digital Fundraising Day 2019. This week’s recap covers digital fundraising strategy.

Aidan Paterson | 25th Nov 19
Digital Fundraising Day 2019 Recap


Thursday the 7th of November was Digital Fundraising Day. We were delighted to welcome a panel of charity leaders and digital gurus for an informative day of webinars, podcasts and videos highlighting the present importance and future impact of digital fundraising. The day saw a great online turnout, but those of you who missed it can catch up with highlights and content from the day. 


Digital Fundraising Strategy

One of the themes that emerged throughout the day was that of digital fundraising strategy. You can find an introduction to the subject in our Digital Fundraising Day ebook – ‘The Future of Making Money for Charities in a Digital Age’.


Digital Revenue Models

With an increasingly digital shopping and banking landscape, charities face new challenges when it comes to generating revenue. Giving is not a priority for many, and even willing supporters may be discouraged from donating if their preferred payment methods are not supported. 

In order to better understand and consolidate their various revenue streams, companies create conceptual structures, or ‘revenue models’, that outline money-making strategies. These models outline the relationship between the product or service being offered, and the target demographics and behaviours of their supporters: the models outline how charities and supporters interact financially. 

Digital revenue models tend to fall into two categories:

Transactional Models – Products and services offered in exchange for revenue; either as a one-off payment, subscription or donation.

Third-Party Revenue – Products and services offered free to the user. Revenue is made up of third-party contributions, generally through ad-sales, sponsorship, data, sales etc. 


Digital Strategy in Action

Caroline Rennie, Product Lead at Comic Relief, fielded audience questions in our final webinar: a ‘How to make more by spending less’ Q&A. Caroline outlined Comic Relief’s new data-driven strategy, as their new regular giving programme seeks to build more intuitive user journeys and payment methods. In 2019 Comic Relief moved to a serverless donation platform. This not only made donation easier but saved 93% in hosting costs. The platform handles fundraising year-round, but most importantly it can handle ‘Night of TV’ levels of transaction any day of the year without the prohibitively high hosting costs associated with the previous platform.

Adgrow’s Adam Bushell led a webinar on optimising PPC to make the most of the Google Grant. Covering everything from basic pay-per-click strategy to Google Adwords’ requirements and restrictions – even using Google ads as a research platform and a source of cheap data for test-driving your corporate messaging. The webinar outlined a number of different options so that charities with varying budgets can get the most out of the Google Grant. Adam also highlighted the importance of convenient payment methods and their place in a supporter-centric digital revenue model: demonstrating the efficacy of messages such as ‘it only takes 3 minutes to donate’ in encouraging supporters to donate. 

Lightful’s Tom DeFraine presented ‘A step-by-step guide to using social media to raise more funds.’  Offering a differing revenue model to the one outlined in Adgrow’s webinar, this guide caters to charities of all sizes looking to adopt a social media-based revenue model. 

Charities that actively use social media are 51% more likely to see an increase in donation, with 9% of charities overall claiming that they have seen social media as a successful channel for fundraising within the past year. 

This step-by-step guide walks you through the process – from setting goals and deciding on metrics, through deciding on channels and choosing your messaging, to involving your supporters and maximising impact.  


Further Material Available

There’s a host of Digital Fundraising day content available.

Next week’s Digital Fundraising Day Recap #2 will focus on platforms.