The 2013 Millennial Impact Report: My 14 favorite findings

11 Sep

2013 impact

1. 83% of millennials say they have smartphones

Takeaway: Engaging them on their smartphone will rapidly become very important. Over the course of time, they will translate their online behaviors from the PC to the mobile and they will become mobile-first and in some cases, mobile-only. If the PC channel is the only one growing across all nonprofits in the US today, then the mobile channel’s importance is existential.

2. Millennials prefer to connect via technology

Takeaway: Simply stated, smartphones give them instant access to you and vice versa. All your communication and fundraising efforts must take this into consideration. Reliance on non-tech efforts will continue to fade in importance.

3. Millennials facilitate and rely on peer influence

Takeaway: 70% of millennials are willing to raise money on your behalf. Peer-to-peer crowd-fundraising should be a tactic you use going forward to leverage this level of interest. If you make it easy for both parties in this transaction, my sense is that this percentage will rise over time.

4. Make it easy to donate

Not enough energy can be poured into user testing of your PC and mobile donation processes. It has been reported that 50% of donors using smartphones to make donations give up because it’s too hard. Look around at what is on offer for “mobile-friendly” and “mobile-optimized” platforms and solutions. Try them yourselves to see what easy looks like. Look for services that let donors securely store their information so they never have to complete your donation form ever again. Features like this are the new normal and you will be judged by your supporters on how easy you make it for them to give to you.

5. Organizations should think “mobile first”

Takeaway: To me this is obvious but it also speaks to something I call the “consumptive experience”. That’s a fancy way of saying make all the content you share “snack-able”, i.e. small in size which will match the time someone will give you on their smartphone.

6. Millennials no longer rely on updates from your website-they go to social media instead

Social media requires a steady supply of fresh content. When was the last time you updated your website? Millennials abhor stale content. With most social media consumed on smartphones the importance of a great mobile experience is paramount.

7. Millennials biggest complaint about their online experience is navigating non-optimized PC sites on their mobile phone

Takeaway: Your PC site on a mobile phone is not a strategy for success going forward.

8. Millennials are starting to ask for donations to causes they support instead of gifts for birthdays and other occassions

Takeaway: See number 3 above. Are you ready to help them do this? How much do you think grandma and grandpa are ready to give you?

9. Make buttons large enough to that visitors to your mobile site can see them easily and click on them

Takeway: I know, this sound like instructions for a senior but in the online world, easy and fast matters to all ages.

10. Millennials are picky about who they engage with in a noisy and dense marketplace of nonprofits

Takeaway: Donors have choices and if you make it hard for them to follow you and to care with their time, talent and treasure they will likely move on to someone who 1) wants them as much as you, and 2) makes it easy for them to engage and give via their smartphone.

11. 75% of millennials like, share or retweet content on social media

Takeaway: You have to be on social media. Period. Give your supporters ways to share you with their social network. We’ve seen campaigns go viral and the results are eye-popping. Mobile sharing is higher (about double) than the PC.

12. 52% are interested in monthly giving

Takeaway: Got recurring giving? Might be time to add it to your donation options.

13. 60% of millennials like it most when you share success stories

Takeaway: This is especially so if there’s a picture of a kitten or baby. Just kidding. Who doesn’t like a great, feel good nonprofit success story? Share them often and regularly.

14. Giving by text ranks lower than giving by mail and just above giving over the phone

Takeaway: I knew this would be the case but was surprised by how low text-to-give is with millennials as a method to give. Industry titan Blackbaud declared text-to-give as pretty much deceased. I’d say this report bears that out.

So there you have it-my 14 favorite things in the MCON 2013 Millennial Impact Report on Giving. As you might imagine, RAZ Mobile grades well on all categories. As you prepare for the mobile and millennial dominated future of giving, give us a call or sign up for a demo on our website under “Give it a Go”. An hour of your time could mean a world of difference to your nonprofit now and in the rapidly-arriving future.

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