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Insights from the 2013 Nonprofit Communication Trends Report

By January 30, 2013April 25th, 2014Nonprofits, Reports

Nonprofit Marketing Guide.Com recently released the 2013 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report, an invaluable resource you can download free.

The report is based on a survey of 1435 nonprofits from thirty countries and asked people what their communication plans were for the year, what tools they planned on using, and much more. The results are fascinating to say the least, and I’d really encourage you to download a free copy of the 34-page report for yourself so you can see how other fundraisers and nonprofits are hoping to spend their year.

Not surprising was the graph and statistic showing how nonprofits identified their most important goals for the year when it came to their communication strategies. Acquiring new donors and engaging community were the top two vote getters. You can see the other priorities in the graph below.
Most Important Communications Goals for Nonprofits in 2013

Behind these numbers is some juicy information about nonprofits and how bigger organizations prioritize their communications in comparison to smaller ones. From the report you’ll learn the differences between the Community/Brand Builders and the Fundraisers from their budgets to their plans to the tools they use to communicate. 

Here are some great excerpts from the report:
The “community/brand builders” were more likely to have written plans and to work for larger organizations (60% in this category have organizational budgets over $1 million). They were more likely to identify media relations/PR, blogging, and social media as very important tools. They were also more likely to say that phone calls/phone banks and paid advertising were their least important tools. They planned to email more frequently, and were much more likely to rely on and experiment with social media than “fundraising” communicators.

Conversely, the “fundraising” communicators were much more likely to identify both print marketing and email marketing as very important communications tools, along with phone calls/phone banks and in- person events. They are likely to send direct mail more often, and to take a more conservative approach to social media. For example, they are more likely to say they are experimenting with sites like Twitter and YouTube, which have been more fully adopted by community/brand builders.

One of the things I really enjoyed about the report was that it asked ”What Excites You about 2013?” The study found that many of you are energized and eager to keep on doing the challenging, important work you do every day. Some of the answers to the question included:

  • New opportunities to expand their reach and connect with new people
  • Using social media more strategically
  • Developing and implementing communications plans

What are you most excited you most about your communication plans for 2013? I’d love to hear what new things you are planning this year!


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