The following article is based on the webinar "A Multi-Channel Approach to Annual Giving," presented by Jessica Harrington, president of the Harrington Agency, and Michael J. Burton, associate vice president of the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center Office of Institutional Advancement.
The current array of digital outlets presents both opportunities and challenges for healthcare philanthropy. Jessica Harrington and Michael Burton offer a data-driven approach to selecting the most appropriate channels of communication to
enhance annual giving.
A New Approach
Harrington and Burton suggest modifying the standard giving pyramid and capping it with an inverted engagement pyramid to form an hourglass. The upper portion depicts the progression from initial awareness (e.g., of a hospital’s mission)
through more involved stages of understanding and commitment.
Where the pyramids converge, the fully-engaged individual becomes a donor (the point of “conversion”) and is ready to embark through the levels of giving from “renewal” through planned giving. Along the way “ambassadors”
(donors who have become champions of the cause) help to spread the word and encourage others to join in.
Judicious use of new channels of communication can greatly advance this process and help potential donors connect with your institution. However, annual giving programs need adequate capacity to take advantage of these channels and achieve
the best return on investment. Facebook, for example, may be a great way to increase awareness of your institution’s mission, but not for getting donations.
How to Choose: The Definitive "Channel Checklist"