Enthuse being named as the official online fundraising partner for both London Marathon Events (LME) and Great Run is something that myself and the entire team is really proud of. It’s a pleasure to work with these two household names and an honour to be trusted with them. When I founded Enthuse as a young fundraiser in 2012, working with the likes of LME and Great Run was right at the top of my bucket list.
But these partnerships certainly aren’t about me and they’re not really about Enthuse either – they’re about charities. This is a landmark moment for the sector. These partnerships are validation for the next generation of digital fundraising – for the charity-first way of thinking.
Together, LME and Great Run cover more than half the UK market for multi charity mass participation events. With the likes of the TCS London Marathon and the Great North Run part of the Enthuse family, some of the largest fundraising events in the world will now be charity-branded and will put causes in control of their data. I think that marks a really pivotal moment for the third sector. Fundraising is being approached differently.
We’ve seen fundraising platforms owned by big companies – like Virgin Money Giving, everydayhero by Blackbaud and BT MyDonate – leave the market in recent years. And charities have suffered because of that. Fundraising deserves to be core business, not a corporate side hustle or CSR policy. Digital fundraising deserves investment in technology and innovation to help charities grow from strength to strength in an increasingly digital-first world.
We’re proud to be leading that charge with LME and Great Run, and here’s how we’re going about it.
Being on brand
In the most recent edition of our quarterly Donor Pulse research, we looked at the importance of brand recall when it comes to donating to charities. The study shows that donors are almost a third more likely to remember the name of the charity if they donate on a charity branded site rather than a consumer giving platform. That’s why we pride ourselves on integrating into a charity’s website and putting their brand front and centre – we want your supporters to remember you, not us.
This is important because the number of people able to remember who they last donated to was at just 63% when we last asked in November. That was actually the lowest the figure has been in 18 months. We call this phenomenon ‘give and forget’. It’s easy to think that the main driver of poor brand recall would be people supporting friends (rather than focusing on the cause) or donating in the spur of the moment. And while it’s certainly a contributing factor, it’s not the sole problem.
The key reason stated for poor recall is that the charity’s branding is not clearly visible. 50% of donors cited this as the reason they couldn’t remember the name of the charity they gave to. This really hinders a cause’s chance of building those longer term relationships with supporters, which make such a difference over time.
Our mission is to put the charity first. This means the charity’s brand and logo are at the forefront of official LME and Great Run fundraising pages. This is a better experience for supporters than consumer giving platforms – and allows charities to inspire, engage and develop supporter relationships.
In a recent, independent eye-tracking study we commissioned, identical pages for a fundraising campaign were set up on Enthuse’s platform and a consumer giving platform. 76% of charity branding was noticed by donors on the Enthuse platform, compared to just 55% of those looking at a leading consumer giving platform. That’s why LME and Great Run fundraising pages will put the charity brand front and centre. We want to make charities the household name.
Enthuse has supported over 20,000 events since it was founded and in the last two years we have pioneered seamless integration between event registration and fundraising solutions to improve fundraising activation and help raise more for charities.
We’ll be bringing this best practice to all the events run by LME and Great Run. This means that the creation of fundraising pages will feel like part of the registration process from now on, creating a strong, seamless user experience for fundraisers. Fundraising pages can now be set up at the same time as registering – reducing admin for charities and preventing supporter drop off. Our goal is to make the fundraising experience as simple and intuitive as possible, which in turn will help charities raise more for their cause.
Charities in charge of their data
At Enthuse, we put the charity in control of their communications and data. These mass event partnerships mean charities will have full access to real time fundraising and donations data, supporter insights and analytics for their supporters – all via a single centralised account for all of the events. This will make supporter relations and campaign management more informed and easier to carry out.
One of the main reasons a supporter has for opting out of charity communications is because they don’t want fundraising platforms to email them and they don’t want charities sharing their data with others. 49% cited third party data and communications as a reason to opt out. Research from our Charity Pulse report also shows that this is a big concern for charities, too. 60% of charitable organisations were concerned about fundraising platforms contacting their supporters. And that’s totally understandable. Charities should be the ones benefiting from the data provided by supporters, not platforms. This is why Enthuse will never send marketing emails to supporters.
Supporters can rest easy knowing they’ll only be contacted by their chosen charity and as a result the charities know exactly how and when fundraisers have been contacted – putting data and communications ownership in the right hands.
We’re delighted to be playing a role in transforming digital fundraising through our partnerships with LME and Great Run and we look forward to seeing the fantastic fundraising results that will follow from a charity-first approach. The next generation of fundraising is about putting charities in the limelight and we’re proud to be enabling that.
If you have any burning questions about the Great Run partnership, you can sign up for our webinar on Thursday 3rd March, here.
Equally, if you’d like to learn more about the platform from one of our helpful Enthusiasts, you can schedule a call here.
For more detail on our partnerships with LME and Great Run, you can find the news in Third Sector, Civil Society, Charity Times and UK Fundraising.