I had an interesting request form one of the readers the other day about the roi of video and its impact on increasing donations. It is an absolutely valid question, and also a very difficult one to answer. Unlike direct mail and phone solicitation Video is not a self contained fund raising technology, it is a component and part of a strategy. Here is my response to her in hopes it may answer some questions out there about the value of video.
Here is what I am going to say about video and actual measurable impact; it is exceedingly hard to prove that video generates MORE donations. The thing with videos is that it creates a more sticky user experience and therefore should increase donations by virtue of increasing traffic. We are in the middle of a Prototype sharinghope.tv I am not sure if we are remeasuring donation patterns but more importantly I am not sure that you can dollar quantify affinity.
One of the most interesting things I have ever heard about donation patters came from Sheraz Haji former CEO of Get Active. He said that the more touch points that you have with constituents the longer their donor life span is AND the greater their overall giving. They may give less to specific donation opportunities but they give more often and more overall.
Unlike direct mail that has a specific solicitation to an specific audience video is a living component on the net and may or may not attract. I would say with good tracking and analytics you can see the number of visitors and the donation activity. How many visitors and how many donations ad how large. You can compare them to your other channels. The winning combination should, in theory, always be a cross channel multi layered approach to attracting donors, and giving them value for their donation.
As a closing note SHaring Hope. TV earned a bit more media coverage recently on local Austin News.