[NPFX Ep. 48] Giving USA 2023: Key Insights behind the Numbers

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Welcome to The Nonprofit Fundraising Exchange, a podcast from IPM Advancement. Our mission is to empower nonprofits to succeed so they can make the world a better place.

Today’s topic: Giving USA 2023 — Key Insights behind the Numbers

The release of the Giving USA 2023 annual report sent shivers through the nonprofit community with its finding that total charitable giving had declined for the first time since 2009. In today's episode, we look behind the data to share key insights and advice for how nonprofits can navigate changes in donor behavior, weather an uncertain economy, and find creative opportunities to boost fundraising and membership.

Time-Stamped Episode Shortcuts:

  • Introductions and background info [1:25]
  • Summary of the report's top level findings [3:09] 
  • Contributions to donor-advised funds are on the rise [7:06]
  • Why individual giving as a percentage of disposable income dropped so low [9:23]
  • The importance of monthly giving as a fundraising strategy for engaging millennials [10:42]
  • Reasons why giving to international affairs and foundations increased [12:22]
  • How the stock market is affecting giving by foundations [15:28]
  • The income gap; and giving that is hard to track [17:14]
  • Shortcomings of the report and what to NOT take away [21:52]
  • Specific recommendations to help nonprofits strengthen their fundraising programs [25:49]
  • The importance of planned giving [28:39]

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Colton C. Strawser, PhD has built his consulting career working with leaders at community foundations, United Ways, homeless shelters, senior service agencies, youth programs, arts and culture organizations, and more. He has trained more than 1,000 organizations and generated over $25 million in government grants. In addition to being a Certified Fund Raising Professional and Certified Nonprofit Professional, he has also completed a Certificate of Nonprofit Board Consulting through BoardSource and is a Master Trainer through the Association of Fundraising Professionals. Dr. Strawser completed his PhD in Nonprofit and Philanthropic Leadership at The Nonprofit Institute at the University of San Diego.

Samantha Timlick, vice president of client services for IPM Advancement, provides subject matter expertise that covers all aspects of client and project management including direct mail, telemarketing, and digital campaigns. Since 2007 she has managed renewal, appeal, and acquisition programs encompassing more than 200 million total recipients.


Russ Phaneuf, a co-founder of IPM Advancement, has a background in higher education development, with positions at the University of Hartford, Northern Arizona University, and Thunderbird School of Global Management. As IPM's managing director & chief strategist, Russ serves as lead fundraising strategist, award-winning content creator, and program analyst specializing in applied system dynamics.

Rich Frazier has worked in the nonprofit sector for over 30 years. In his role as senior consultant with IPM Advancement, Rich offers extensive understanding and knowledge in major gifts program management, fund development, strategic planning, and board of directors development.


On average, new IPM clients see a 34.8% increase in direct mail fundraising acquisition response rates within the first year of working with us. Want to learn more?

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