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Multichannel Engagement Key For Nonprofits’ Fundraising Success

Nonprofit organizations around the world are looking to expand use of mobile technology, grow online fundraising and improve donor communication and multichannel engagement.

These are just some of the findings from the 2012 State of the Nonprofit Industry report, released today by Blackbaud, Inc. (NASDAQ: BLKB), featuring survey results from more than 1500 respondents from nine countries covering approaches to overcoming common challenges, fundraising trends, and use of mobile and interactive technology.

“Optimism in the nonprofit sector varies based largely on how an organization communicates with its constituents and the technologies it employs,” said Marc Chardon, Blackbaud’s chief executive officer. “Generally, nonprofits that adopt multiple engagement channels have a more optimistic outlook on their ability to recruit new donors, retain existing donors and grow individual contributions in the coming year.”

Key findings from the survey include:
  • Multichannel Engagement Key for Fundraising Success Respondents that reported using several solicitation methods to drive donations reported higher levels of optimism for their ability to increase individual contributions in the next year. Special events were the most widely reported method for soliciting individual donations, while social networking, one-on-one meetings and peer-to-peer fundraising were reportedly the fastest growing methods of fundraising in all countries.
  • Use of Mobile Technologies on the Rise – Respondents reported that their use of mobile technologies for marketing and fundraising will greatly increase in the next year, in most cases more than doubling. More than two-thirds plan on using at least one mobile technology such as mobile-optimized websites and emails or QR codes. More than one-third of respondents from organizations that actively fundraise reported they will use mobile devices to collect funds when outside the office, enable SMS/text giving, or use mobile devices to access information contained in their donor database in the next year.
  • Online Giving Small but Growing Percentage of Donation Income – While the proportion of total donations received by respondents online is relatively small, the majority of organizations that accept online donations report that the proportion of online giving to total contributions has increased in the past 12 months. Organizations successful in growing online donations reported that the top factors leading to growth include adopting new software and technologies to make online donation options more available and easier to use, among others.
  • Regular Communication Important for Donor Retention – Constant, ongoing communication with donors was reportedly the most effective strategy used by nonprofits that were successful in retaining existing donors. There was a positive relationship between prompt acknowledgement of a donation and donor retention rates among respondents. Using personal contacts from staff, volunteers, or board members and prospecting special event attendees were the most frequently reported methods used for discovering new potential donors.
  • Staff Recruiting Remains a Challenge Worldwide – The percentage of respondents that reported experiencing difficulty with recruiting new staff ranged from 33% of organizations in Canada to 73% of organizations in Italy. Of those that did experience difficulty recruiting staff, locating employees with the right skills sets and providing adequate funding for positions were the biggest challenges. Organizations that reported ease in recruiting staff said that having a strong reputation and a mission for which there is a passion in the community are key factors in their recruitment strategy.

For more comprehensive data and a breakdown by country, visit www.blackbaud.com/soni to download the full report.

About the survey

The State of the Nonprofit Industry survey is disseminated via a unique collaborative worldwide network of nonprofit country institutes, associations and NGOs including: L'Association Française des Fundraisers, Centro Studi Philanthropy, Daryl Upsall Consulting International, Deutscher Fundraising Verband, Fundraising Institute of Australia (FIA), Fundraising Institute of New Zealand (FINZ), and The Resource Alliance. This year’s survey was fielded in June 2012 and reports on data from more than 1,500 respondents in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, United Kingdom, and the United States. Conducted annually since 2004, the survey questions uncover: approaches to overcoming common nonprofit challenges, fundraising trends, and the use of mobile technologies. To download the complete report, visit  www.blackbaud.com/soni.

About Blackbaud

Serving the nonprofit and education sectors for 30 years, Blackbaud (NASDAQ: BLKB) combines technology and expertise to help organizations achieve their missions. Blackbaud works with more than 27,000 customers in over 60 countries that support higher education, healthcare, human services, arts and culture, faith, the environment, independent K-12 education, animal welfare and other charitable causes. The company offers a full spectrum of cloud-based and on-premise software solutions and related services for organizations of all sizes including: fundraising, eMarketing, social media, advocacy, constituent relationship management (CRM), analytics, financial management and vertical-specific solutions. Using Blackbaud technology, these organizations raise more than $100 billion each year. Recognized as a top company by Forbes, InformationWeek, and Software Magazine and honored by Best Places to Work, Blackbaud is headquartered in Charleston, South Carolina and has operations in the United States, Australia, Canada, Mexico, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit  www.blackbaud.com.

Forward-looking Statements

Except for historical information, all of the statements, expectations, and assumptions contained in this news release are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Although Blackbaud attempts to be accurate in making these forward-looking statements, it is possible that future circumstances might differ from the assumptions on which such statements are based. In addition, other important factors that could cause results to differ materially include the following: general economic risks; uncertainty regarding increased business and renewals from existing customers; continued success in sales growth; management of integration of acquired companies and other risks associated with acquisitions; risks associated with successful implementation of multiple integrated software products; the ability to attract and retain key personnel; risks related to our dividend policy and share repurchase program, including potential limitations on our ability to grow and the possibility that we might discontinue payment of dividends; risks relating to restrictions imposed by the credit facility; risks associated with management of growth; lengthy sales and implementation cycles, particularly in larger organization; technological changes that make our products and services less competitive; and the other risk factors set forth from time to time in the SEC filings for Blackbaud, copies of which are available free of charge at the SEC's website at www.sec.gov or upon request from Blackbaud's investor relations department. All Blackbaud product names appearing herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of Blackbaud, Inc.

Copyright Business Wire 2010

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