Why These Trends Aren’t Trends

The other day I was reading an article published by a fundraising software company that had a whole list of “trends” that are going on in the nonprofit sector. I had to stop and pause for a minute because it always concerns me when I see these companies put out articles written by their sales staff and not development staff or even consultants.

Once I got over that, I had to keep reading. These so-called trends included donor retention, matching campaigns, and peer-to-peer engagement. It was very evident that these articles were really reaching to get to authority status. Was the author an authority on what’s trending? In the majority of the articles, I’d have to say no. The other sticking point was that these topics aren’t really trends.

I’ve been in fundraising for nearly 25 years and we’ve been talking about donor retention for at least the last 20 years so that’s nothing new. Now if the article provided a twist, I might buy it. But it didn’t and it didn’t prove its point to what was trending. That applied to the other topics too.

These trends aren’t trends. They are absolutes! Things you must-do if you want to have a strong fundraising program. So, keep that in mind. And, if you want to hear about what’s really trending, keep an eye out for my future blog post on the topic.