September 11, 2020 | Categories Donor Management, Featured, Fundraising Strategies

Nonprofits Share Their Election Year Fundraising Plans

Does competition from political fundraising affect donor giving? Learn how nonprofits are adjusting their election year fundraising plans.

No matter where you land on the political spectrum, one thing we can all agree on is that it’s an unprecedented time in American politics and the world in general. Will that mean changes in nonprofit giving levels? Does competition from political fundraising affect donations to nonprofits? We surveyed hundreds of nonprofit organizations, like you, to find out what changes, if any, they were making to their fundraising plans as a result of the 2020 election. Here’s what they shared with us:

It’s Business as Usual

For many of you, the 2020 election is a non-issue. Over 67% of the nonprofits we surveyed said they were not concerned or only slightly concerned that their supporters would donate to political candidates instead of donating to their cause. Also interesting to note was that 18% of those nonprofits were not planning to do anything differently to reach out to donors during election season. That could be a mistake.

Even if you plan not to adjust your regular fundraising activities, that doesn’t mean the election won’t impact your solicitations. You still need to pay attention to the timeline of when your regular direct mail, emails, and other fundraising appeals are delivered to donors. Otherwise, you risk getting drowned out by all the political chatter.


Keep up the good work but don’t forget to adjust when to send your appeals so they don’t get lost in all the 2020 election noise.



How nonprofits are adjusting their election year fundraising plans to promote their mission and causes?

I’m Focusing on My Mission

In our survey, 31% of nonprofits said they planned to avoid election issues and focus on how their cause is compelling on its own. Will the work you do now be just as important after the election as it was before? What would happen in the community if you didn’t do your work? Use this time to remind your supporters about why they partnered with you in the first place. Then, ask them to partner with you on a monthly basis to ensure lasting impact beyond the 2020 election. Nearly 17% of the nonprofits we surveyed saw an increase in the number of recurring donations following the 2016 election. This year’s election could have even more recurring donors.


Remain on mission during the election by sharing powerful stories that demonstrate why you do what you do and who you help. You’ll connect with donors and keep them engaged in your cause.



How are nonprofits adjusting the messaging strategy in their election year fundraising plans?

I’m Boosting Advocacy Issues

For many nonprofits in our survey, the election provides an opportunity to amplify their cause to push for truly lasting change beyond the election. Over 40% of our survey participants said they planned to use social media to build awareness of their cause. They also see the election as a chance to interact with younger donors that are engaging in community issues for the first time.


Right now, political-minded donors are interested in making donations to their favorite causes. Tap into this momentum to introduce your cause to new supporters.



Will the 2020 Election Impact Your Fundraising Plans?

If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s about the need to be resilient and adapt to shifting priorities. DonorPerfect provides powerful online fundraising tools that help any size nonprofit organization grow and adapt to any change with ease. Plus, DonorPerfect’s many integrations allow you to explore new and creative ways to raise more online as your needs and goals expand. Visit our online fundraising features page to learn about the many ways DonorPerfect can help your fundraising plans succeed.


Written by Ally Orlando