RBW Strategy Logo - Standard - RGB


Holy moly, what a whirlwind of a year! If we’ve learned one thing from 2020, it’s that all the planning in the world can’t prepare you for what’s in the future. So you might be thinking — how are we supposed to predict what’s coming in 2021 when this year was so unpredictable? Truth of the matter is, you can’t. However given the climate we’re in, there are a few nonprofit trends we believe will stay put. Let’s dive in.


nonprofit trends


Virtual Events


The FDA approval of a COVID vaccine has provided some hope for normalcy in the next year. However, it’s likely this vaccine won’t be accessible to everyone until mid to late 2021. That being said, we expect that virtual fundraising events will stay prominent in the nonprofit sector and elsewhere. While virtual events haven’t been ideal, we’ve been in awe of the innovation and resiliency nonprofit organizations have been able to produce in their online events. Because there are less logistics and costs to sort through such as travel, lodging, etc, nonprofits have been able to produce more events at a quicker pace. Connecting with attendees, speakers, and sponsors has been a bit easier as well, as many are seeking out these virtual opportunities in replacement of in-person events.


Recurring Giving.


The pandemic has accelerated the movement for online giving, and organizations have seen the benefits it can produce. We find it interesting that  traditional methods of fundraising such as donation forms, crowdfunding, and peer-to-peer fundraising have come back to the forefront of nonprofit funding. While the pandemic has limited us in ways we can’t explain, there’s one positive thing it did produce: empathy. During this time, recurring funders are more likely to feel connected with the impact of an organization, and in turn, the organization is able to create a more predictable revenue stream. The year 2020 has shown us that the missions and goals of nonprofit organizations can/will be ongoing, and funders have continued to tap into that opportunity to support organizations long-term through this crisis. 


The Bridging of Nonprofit and For-Profit Communication. 


This year has forced us to think outside the box when it comes to partnerships and nonprofit trends. It’s also taught us that we are stronger and more unified when we work together. It’s been eye opening to see the blending of various partnerships that may not have happened if the pandemic didn’t occur. For example, you may have seen articles about food delivery services like UberEats or DoorDash partnering with local giving kitchens to provide meals to those financially impacted by COVID. A partnership like this is a win-win scenario. As nonprofits are gaining exposure, for-profits are also seeing an increase in sales, recognizing the importance of corporate social responsibility, and improving their marketing efforts. These partnerships also allow nonprofits to sustain growth and scale at a rate they’ve never seen before.


Diverse and Inclusive Leadership. 


In response to the prevalent racial injustice matters going on worldwide, many organizations have taken proactive measures to update their diversity and inclusion policies. Organizations are recognizing the need to step up when it comes to collecting feedback from employees, eliminate bias in the hiring process, and creating communication that is transparent. 


What nonprofit trends have you witnessed in the nonprofit sector this year? What do you think will change in the coming year? Leave us a comment below!

If you’re looking to ramp up your grant funding efforts in 2021 and need additional support, RBW Strategy has your back. We offer a variety of grant consulting services including prospect research, grant writing, grant management, and more. Learn more about working with RBW, and contact us today!


Share the Post:

Stay in the know

Get our monthly newsletter with practical tips on how to manage the grant lifecycle, plus updates on upcoming deadlines and trainings.