Letter from the Director
A “new normal” in higher education comes with many adjustments, but also fresh perspectives in the philanthropy and fundraising world. While restrictions on COVID-19 are lifted, institutions and nonprofits are enacting their return-to-office plans. In the fundraising world, we are analyzing giving data from the first half of 2021 to see if we can garner any insights about philanthropy as we move toward a new, post-pandemic world.
An article titled “Knocking on The Right Door” from CASE’s Currents magazine talks about how data assists in identifying the right donors. The article highlights the importance of quantitative and qualitative data and research for advancement. Quantitative data can be measured or counted, such as dollar amounts or the number of donors. Qualitative data is non-numerical data, such as details from a meeting or an event and can be found through contact reports, event reports, and surveys. However, the article reminds us that qualitative data needs to be organized in a way that allows you to analyze it. Many fundraisers and prospect research professionals know the importance of combining quantitative and qualitative data to identify and gather meaningful insights and get a better picture of prospective donors. Institutions that analyze data can best understand the characteristics of donors, how much they give, and the reason for their support.
As we all know, when audiences and supporters feel connected to the mission of an organization and know the impact they can make with their support, they will be more willing to make generous contributions. We wish you a safe summer as we navigate through the second half of the calendar year. As always, feel free to reach out us with questions, comments or any assistance with prospect research!
Sapna and USM Advancement Research Team
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