HALF OF ALL YOUR DONORS DO NOT KNOW WHAT YOU DO.
As impossible as that sounds, our research backs it up. In study after study, we find donors don’t understand what United Way - an organization they give money to - does.
If half of your donors don’t understand what you do, how well do your communities understand you?
The complex role of United Ways in their communities is not well understood, so United Ways are often perceived as nothing more than a fundraiser.
This is problematic because many donors and community members no longer see the need for an organization that fundraises on the behalf of others:
But it’s obvious that an increasing number of donors are asking a perfectly reasonable question now: Who needs a charitable middleman when causes and data galore are at our fingertips?
- New York Times, Dec. 23, 2016
Just like the nonprofit counterparts that they have historically funded, the United Way has to either adjust to a changing landscape or get out of the way.
- Nonprofit Quarterly, Oct. 17, 2017
"You have competing mechanisms for giving," says Ruth McCambridge, editor in chief at Boston-based Nonprofit Quarterly ... "Long story short, people don't need that kind of intermediation to give anymore."
- Chicago Business, April 6, 2018
United Ways rely on public support.
United Ways cannot survive if they are not relevant.
To remain relevant, United Ways need their communities to understand what they do. To remain relevant, United Ways need the ability to communicate the impact that giving to United Way has on the community.