6 Nonprofit Technology Trends to Watch in 2022


Technology is always changing and it’s nearly impossible to keep up with every new privacy update or algorithm change. Nonprofits try their best to keep up with rising trends in nonprofit technology to ensure their fundraising and advocacy efforts are primed to succeed. In this blog post, we’ll explore six trends in nonprofit technology that will help you raise more money and win more campaigns.

The pandemic made everyone reevaluate their campaign strategies. Despite an ongoing healthcare emergency, financial crisis, and geopolitical unrest, charitable organizations were able to drive record fundraising results and support worthy causes around the world. According to the Charities Aid Foundation’s World Giving Index, which recently surveyed 1.3 million people in 125 countries, donors grew more generous during the pandemic: 2020 and 2021 donations each topped 2019. We saw similar growth among Engaging Networks clients.

engaging networks client performance in 2020 and 2021 - Nonprofit Technology

As the world shut down, nonprofits and charities expanded their digital efforts and found ways to connect with a whole new group of donors and supporters. So what’s next? Here are six trends in nonprofit technology that you’ll want to keep an eye on:

1. Inclusive Digital Marketing

Access to information is a fundamental human right which establishes that everyone can access information from public bodies, subject only to a limited regime of exceptions in keeping with a democratic society and proportionate to the interest that justifies them.

Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

Inclusive digital marketing and improved accessibility practices will be one of the most important trends to follow in 2022. All of your website copy, forms,  social media, and other marketing should be fully accessible and welcoming to all. 

Representation matters – in race, gender, politics and many other viewpoints. Your audience will be expecting these messages and visuals as they interact with you. A 2019 study by Adobe highlighted that 61% of Americans think diversity in advertising is important. According to Pew Research, Gen Z is the most diverse generation in history and future generations are only growing more diverse. 

Focusing on accessibility and inclusivity will help create more loyal advocates and supporters for years to come. Check out our recent webinar on accessibility templates now available on Engaging Networks.

2. Rise of SMS Messaging

With open rates of 99%, it’s no wonder SMS sending is being adopted by so many nonprofits as a core part of their marketing strategy. More and more national and community organizations are using SMS to drive action and raise funds within a time-bound campaign. And though email is still extremely important, SMS messaging doesn’t have to compete with hundreds of other promotional emails in an email inbox.

This highly personal form of communication is best used as part of your marketing automation journeys. But there can be too much of a good thing – you’ll see your opt-out numbers increase if you aren’t selective in quantity and quality of the SMS messages you send.

3. Alternative Payment Methods

p2p apps venmo phones exchanging funds - Nonprofit Technology

Between cryptocurrency and P2P mobile payment services like Venmo, you have to wonder what the future looks like for supporter donations. We won’t get into crypto just yet in this overview, but there are already countless P2P mobile payment apps your donors likely routinely use for everyday purchases. In fact, more than 50 million Americans use Venmo in P2P transactions. The app processed nearly $160 million in 2020 and adoption of the app is only increasing among individual users, small businesses and organizations and larger national charities. Other payment methods like Paypal, Stripe ACH, Zelle, Apple Pay and countless others are not far behind.

The social media factor behind these payment methods is integral to their rapid success and adoption. Fun captions and emojis often accompany each P2P transaction as it’s shared to the user’s social feed within the app. Consider fun ways to make use of this social space when making these payment methods a part of your fundraising strategy.

4. Connected Social Media

We all know social media strategy by now, right? You likely have a pretty good idea of what works on your organization’s channels or at least what you hope to do more of in the coming year. But have you really taken a step back to consider how much social media has changed since the onset of the pandemic? Yes, algorithm changes have made it harder for your content to be seen without a substantial budget, but there are other factors to consider for future campaign success.

35.9% of all internet users will make at least one social commerce purchase in 2022

Insider Intelligence

After two years of lockdowns and remote work, the tie to social media is stronger than ever. Recent figures show that there was a 4.8% increase in social media users in 2021, bringing the total to 3.96 billion worldwide. It’s time to start thinking about how you can better monetize your social media engagement. Insider Intelligence predicts that 35.9% of all internet users will make at least one social commerce purchase in 2022. Setting up a social commerce campaign within your social strategy will be extremely important in coming years. And with that eCommerce model, you’ll want to make sure all of your shipping and production employs sustainable practices – another important factor your donors and supporters will expect. 

Outside of social commerce, pay attention to the rise of TikTok. The app now sits comfortably at the top of app stores and is one of the most used social media platforms by the rising generation (though older generations are also taking to it quickly). Social media is the primary way a large portion of  your donor or supporter base stays connected with family, friends, and the causes and organizations they care about the most.

5. Personalization

We’ll call this one an oldie but a goodie because it shouldn’t be news to anyone that personalization in nonprofit marketing has been on the rise for some time. But are you really capitalizing on the many opportunities your organization has to personalize donation forms for returning donors, next suggested gift, landing pages, emails and thank you communications? 

next suggested gift format in engaging networks
Selecting next suggested gift within Engaging Networks.

Investing in personalization for your donor and supporter base will only create a more loyal, consistent audience for your future campaigns. 70% of Generation Z surveyed believe websites will eventually know what you are looking for automatically. 

Now would be a good time to reference our sister company, Accessible Intelligence. The tool integrates seamlessly with Engaging Networks and can tell you the most effective messages to send your donor segments, make recommendations on content that will resonate with these supporters, suggest the giving level and more. 

6. Cybersecurity and Data Responsibility

The adoption of CCPA and GDPR in recent years has put increased attention on data responsibility practices. Only 39% of Gen Z say they trust organizations to keep their data safe, the lowest rate of any generation. Knowing this trend will only continue, now is the time to sure up your data governance policies.

Only 39% of Gen Z say they trust organizations to keep their data safe.

There are larger cybersecurity tasks your IT team is likely focusing on, but consider implementing more commonplace practices like single sign-on (SSO), email list hygiene, and other responsible data habits. It’s also extremely important to have a dedicated page or blog on your website that explains your data governance or cookie policy.

The work your nonprofit or charity is engaged in is extremely important to so many! We hope these nonprofit technology tips and trends help you raise more money and win more campaigns as you find creative ways to work them into your 2022 digital marketing strategy. 

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