Affinity-Based Digital Advertising vs. Traditional Fundraising Strategies: Which One’s Right for My Organization?

We’re coming to a tipping point in the nonprofit fundraising world — traditional fundraising strategies are still widespread, but there’s a lot of new access to tech that’s making digital fundraising ever-more popular.

So which one’s right for your nonprofit — affinity-based digital advertising or traditional fundraising strategies?

Answer: both.

Traditional fundraising methods are traditional for a reason. They work! Mailers, drives, and one-to-one outreach for your major donors are always going to give you results — plus, everybody loves a fundraising event. (Who wouldn’t want to throw a party for a good cause?)

Digital fundraising — and especially affinity-based digital advertising — is incredibly powerful too. This includes things like targeted omni-channel marketing. (AKA you send specific ad campaigns to specific segments, across several channels, like social media and text campaigns, or banner ads and Facebook ads.) It’s faster and has a wider reach than most traditional fundraising tools. But even the best email campaign is never going to take the place of, say, a Jeffersonian dinner.

That’s why we recommend that you use both types of strategies.

Each can enhance the other, and help mitigate the other’s weaknesses.

For instance, traditional fundraising strategies can be better for reaching out to your major donors — and if you do that kind of outreach and follow it up with digital marketing campaigns to remind them of their impact throughout the year, you’ll see even better results.

Likewise, a digital advertising campaign can have a far greater scope and speed of outreach than a traditional fundraising mailer — but if you combine your digital outreach with a thoughtful, high-quality thank you letter from your organization at the end of the year, you’ll be able to cultivate an even deeper relationship with your donor pool.

The possibilities really are endless here.

You can match digital advertising campaigns with phone drives to take advantage of seasonal or one-off spikes, use the mailing list you’ve built up over the years as a base for an AI-based affinity analysis, and even transfer mailer strategies that have reliably worked in years past to new segments of the market you wouldn’t have known existed… except when using affinity-based prospecting.

Long story short? Digital is here to stay — but there’s no need to throw the baby out with the bath water.

When it comes down to it, humans are humans, and they’re ultimately going to respond to the same basic things. If you can learn to harness these new fundraising tools and enhance your traditional strategy, you’re setting yourself up for exponential wins.

We’ve got you! Schedule a quick chat with us to dive into your needs and desires, and we’ll show you just how boodleAI can help!

Your Guide to Affinity Fundraising

Download our All Things Affinity eBook to learn about affinity, why it matters, and how to use it in your organization's fundraising strategy.

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About boodleAI

boodleAI is changing the game for donor acquisition and retention by delivering groundbreaking lifts in donations, engagement, and lifetime retention rates. We have revolutionized donor prospecting by dynamically providing high-quality, mission-aligned donor prospects directly to nonprofits. Using our seamless advertising solutions, converting these AI-curated donor prospects into lifetime donors has never been easier.