Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Gets Its Moment in the Sun

No matter where you looked over the past two weeks, peer-to-peer fundraising was drawing big headlines.

The trade media — as well as a number of blogs — have been sharing thoughts and insights related to the recent release of the Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Thirty, as well as other trends in the field.

Here’s a rundown of some of the recent coverage:

The Chronicle of Philanthropy — Smaller Charity Walks See Gains; Big Events See Declines

Many of the nation’s largest peer-to-peer fundraising programs have seen their revenues decline over the past decades while a number of smaller, upstart events are seeing big gains, reports The Chronicle of Philanthropy.

“Four large drives alone — the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life, March of Dimes’ March for Babies, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training, and the Susan G. Komen 3-Day — saw a total decrease of $254.5 million in fundraising from 2006 levels,” The Chronicle reported, citing data from The Peer-to-Peer Professional Forum’s latest Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Thirty survey. “Those losses came as some other organizations increased their revenue many times over during the past decade.”

The Nonprofit Times — Top Peer-to-Peer Events Struggling, Down 7.7%

Increased competition and better tools have helped smaller peer-to-peer programs become more effective, The Nonprofit Times reports.

The report, which cites data from the Peer-to-Peer Professional Forum’s survey of the nation’s largest peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns, notes that many of the nation’s largest programs have lost ground over the past decade to smaller, more nimble programs.

“A digital revolution and generational shift has deemphasized one-size-fits-all large programs while also providing more organizations with the opportunity to tap into supporters,” the Nonprofit Times said in its report.

Philanthropy News Digest — More Charities See Significant Revenue From Peer-to-Peer Fundraising

While some of the nation’s largest peer-to-peer fundraising events — runs, walks, and rides among them — are struggling to compete with newer, faster-growing campaigns, others are seeing significant increases in revenue, writes Philanthropy News Digest, citing the P2P Professional Forum’s annual report on the largest P2P fundraising programs in the U.S.

Plenty — More Than the Sum of Our Parts: A Recap of the P2P Forum

Jeff ShuckJeff Shuck, the chief executive of the consulting firm Plenty, explores the fundraising results of the 30 largest peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns in 2015, and finds some common traits among the groups that are seeing the greatest successes.

“At no time has the complexity in the peer-to-peer landscape been more evident than this year. As we look at not only the 2015 results but the trending over time, it is clearer than ever that fundraising success is not just about the activity, the ask, or even the cause,” Shuck writes. “People matter. Brands matter. And more than ever, leadership matters.”

Plenty also offers a downloadable report that analyzes the results.

NPEngage — What the Crowd Is Telling Us About P2P Fundraising

Shana MastersonBlackbaud’s Shana Masterson offers an interesting look at how crowdfunding is impacting the world of peer-to-peer fundraising on the blog NPEngage.

“As fundraisers, this is a fundraising evolution that demands our attention,” Masterson writes. “Crowdfunding’s rapid acceleration in the number of platforms and total revenue, coupled with its increasing familiarity among the general public, indicates there are lessons to learn. Crowdfunding is changing the landscape of fundraising as we know it, and we stand on the precipice of a major shift in peer-to-peer fundraising.”

DonorDrive — Why We Do What We Do

The consulting company DonorDrive put together a wonderful roundup of responses from peer-to-peer fundraisers about the most compassionate act that happened with their causes during the past year.

The responses were inspiring — and even included celebrity appearances from Bill Murray, Ryan Reynolds, and a certain webbed super hero.Screen Shot 2016-03-07 at 3.34.22 PM


Event 360 — Finding and Reaching Your Audience in a Digital Age

If you don’t know your audience, it’s difficult to build an effective peer-to-peer fundraising campaign, says Jim Hennessey, director of consumer marketing for Event 360.

Hennessey, who recently led a session on connecting with audiences at the Peer-to-Peer Professional Forum’s annual conference, writes on the Event 360 blog about the keys to building an audience-focused digital strategy for P2P campaigns.