News, Research & Trends

Webinar Recap: Engaging Millennial Supporters

on July 25, 2018

We recently tackled a topic on a webinar that’s a pretty big buzzword out there right now… Millennials. And, not just who they are and why should you care, but how Millennials are changing the face of giving at this very moment.

Millennials are a powerful force in the giving space and they’re using technology and their voices differently than any other generation out there.

Didn’t get a chance to catch our Engaging Millennial supporters webinar? No worries. You can watch the webinar or scroll down for a quick recap below. Either way, digging in and learning how Millennials can affect your nonprofit is a great idea to gain (and retain) their support in the coming years.

Watch the Engaging Millennial supporters webinar

To download the webinar slides from the video above, click here.

The Millennial basics

Millennials are considered anyone born between 1981 and 1996. And that number is big. In 2017, there were 71 million Millennials roaming the United States (and probably looking for causes to support). This generation is considered the most racially and ethnically diverse adult generation in history.

Their habits aren’t surprising with 92% owning a smartphone, 85% engaging in social media, and a $2.45 trillion in spending power.

How Millennials show support

An extremely large percentage (90%) of Millennials believe they can have an impact in the world and are ready and willing to help make that happen. 82% have donated to a nonprofit within the last year, and Millennials have been shown to be more likely to give monthly over making one-time large donations.

Additionally, volunteerism is highly valued to a Millennial, with 72% of the population giving their time to volunteer activities in the last year.

Millennial giving insights

Millennials have fewer attachments to religious and political institutions than any generation before, and they are showing their support for causes and social issues that personally appeal to them and shape their future.

By connecting to a personalized network of friends, colleagues, and affinity groups through social and digital media, they’re able to provide support in nontraditional ways and still create large impact. They aren’t only passionate about who they are supporting and how they support, but they’re also breaking the mold in terms of how they find out about nonprofits to support, thanks to social sharing. Millennials see the world as one connected place without borders and really want to be a part of something bigger.

Millennial giving trends

The technology that Millennials use is having a huge impact on how the nonprofit space can attract and retain this generation. 51% of Millennials have given through a nonprofit website and 37% have donated online through their phone. A large portion of Millennials (36%) have donated based on what they’ve read on a nonprofit’s website or campaign page.

Social fundraising and the Millennial generation

Social fundraising is the act of getting people (supporters, donors, evangelists, fundraisers, etc.) to post to their personal networks about the actions that they take related to your cause.

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The difference between social fundraising and posting on social as a nonprofit is that, with social fundraising, your supporter is at the forefront of the post... not your nonprofit or brand. It leads to more engagement and an authentic look into what your cause is about, straight from the actual supporter. This supporter base is beyond your normal reach and comes with an expansion in awareness of your cause and donations from new supporters.  

What are the best times to encourage Millennials to share?

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Supporters are ready to share their action with your cause at five pivotal points in their supporter journey. To encourage this action, make sure that you have the functionality in place that allows them to be nudged at various points to share on their social networks. Additionally, make sure that your supporter base understands that the value of a share is real and can make a huge impact on your cause.

Let Millennials support in the ways that work for them

Millennials engage in ways that are unique to their generation. Some ways to meet them where they are at in terms of how they choose to support are:

  • Allow them the opportunity to give in smaller doses and ask for small recurring donations
  • Provide more value with social sharing on social media
  • Create new opportunities with peer-to-peer and DIY fundraising
  • Enable Millennials to give using their mobile device in order to quickly and easily support your cause

Have the functionality that will attract Millennials


Being optimized for mobile usage is a major plus when it comes to creating a giving atmosphere geared towards the way Millennials function. You should have website or campaign pages that work not only on desktop, but on mobile as well so Millennials can give on the go and when they want.

According to GoFundMe data, mobile traffic has increased 11% over the last two years and 79% of their traffic is entirely from mobile devices. A whopping 62% of donations to GoFundMe campaigns actually come directly from a mobile device.

Video friendly

Make sure your fundraising platform allows for video updates so you can reach new donors, share campaign updates, and encourage supporters to post videos related to their personal fundraisers as well.

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Optimized for social sharing

As we mentioned before, being optimized for social sharing is huge when it comes to this generation. Our baked in Social Amp™ feature allows nonprofits to get the most social shares possible.

blg_WebinarRecap_2018_5InfoGraphic_In-blog GraphicsSupport DIY fundraising

Do-it-yourself fundraising (or DIY fundraising) as we talked about above is when supporters create their own events or campaigns when they want and how they want. The money raised benefits their favorite nonprofit and it is a great way to encourage people who want to do more to get involved. It’s a really great option for nonprofits with large and highly engaged supporter bases.

Gary Wohlfeill

Gary Wohlfeill is the Director of Marketing at CrowdRise. He works with partners to develop highly engaging fundraising campaigns, and leads the marketing team in developing the CrowdRise brand. Gary has been named as having the “3rd best haircut of people under 6 feet tall at CrowdRise" and hopes one day to slip to 4th.