Have you heard of “non-scale victories”?
It’s a term used by many people involved in fitness (spin class instructors, fitness influencers, personal trainers, or even your neighbor who is really into jogging), and refers to progress besides losing weight.
It’s a win or success that doesn’t show on a scale, but shows how much stronger or more in shape you’re getting. Like losing inches around your waist or carrying your preschooler around Disneyworld all day without getting tired (this really deserves a medal and parade though).
You’re probably wondering what this has to do with fundraising.
Well, if you ask a nonprofit how they measure success, most people will talk about overall income, net income, or ROI.
And those make sense. Because, let’s face it, money directly impacts how much work your organization can do. Individual appeals and newsletters or whole campaigns are measured by how much money they raised. Which is important.
But it’s not the only thing to look at.
Just like there are victories for someone getting in shape that don’t relate to the number on the scale changing, there are non-scale victories for nonprofits. They’re other measures of success besides money.
So what are some non-scale victories for your nonprofit?
–Donors shift from giving small gifts to higher amounts. This is when a donor moves gift brackets: they used to give $25 each time, but now they’re giving $75. These shifts are a great indicator that your donors are supportive and like you. They believe in your mission and want to be a part of it.
–Increase in gifts per donor. Maybe a donor has been solidly giving once a year for several years. But now they’re giving 3 times a year. That’s a sign that they’re leaning in to your mission, and your thank you and receipting process is working well.
–Donor feedback is positive. Don’t just look at money, look at what your donors are saying. Do they tell others about your organization? Do they feel a connection with your organization’s leader? We often tell our clients that when their donors think the CEO is writing everything they send out, you know a connection is being built.
These aren’t the only non-scale victories your nonprofit can have, of course. But if you’re looking at results, look deeper than the bottom line. There are probably more successes to celebrate than you realize.
So, what non-scale victories have you had recently? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know!