Growing Responsive Fundraising at Scale

by Noah Barnett

We created Virtuous in 2014 to provide nonprofit organizations with a platform to grow generosity and build donor relationships through responsive fundraising. We’ve since become the fastest-growing nonprofit CRM and have been adding more tools to the platform to support the entire giving experience, whether that’s with a donor or a volunteer. 

Most giving is driven by a personal connection to a cause or mission. The problem is many nonprofits struggle to create this type of personal connection with donors at scale. Most organizations remain handcuffed to traditional fundraising models that are largely impersonal simply because they don’t have the systems in place that enable a personal connection to their entire donor base. Instead, major donors tend to receive high-touch, personal experiences and the rest get the standard monthly email or appeal.

But donor expectations have changed over the past 15 years. Donors have grown accustomed to deeply personalized experiences provided by their favorite brands, news feeds and mobile apps. They have come to crave this type of personalization from the nonprofit organizations they choose to support. When donors don’t feel like a valued part of the organization, they will move on. In fact, the average nonprofit loses 76% of donors after that first gift is given.

Most nonprofit leaders and fundraisers recognize the need to shift to align with donor expectations, but many still struggle to leverage tactics that cultivate rich relationships with non-major donors. But generosity is about so much more than dollar amounts. “Every day” loyal donors are valuable and champion the cause to the broader community.

The bottom line is today’s givers expect a personalized connection with the organizations they care about ­— and rightly so. But delivering that experience at scale is a challenge without the right tools in place.

Noah Barnett is CMO at Virtuous and the host of the “Responsive Fundraising” podcast. Virtuous is a technology company committed to helping nonprofits grow generosity. Much more than a nonprofit CRM, Virtuous is a suite of responsive fundraising platforms designed to help nonprofit teams build better supporter relationships and increase impact with confidence.

Previously, Noah spent 10 years in fundraising and marketing leadership roles at CauseVox, World Help, HubSpot and The Adventure Project. He knows firsthand the challenges nonprofits face and is passionate about equipping them with the resources and insights they need to rally people around their cause.

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