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How User Reviews Can Contribute to Fundraising Success

Reprinted from the GreatNonprofits Newsletter

We've heard a number of stories from nonprofits about ways they have already benefited from user reviews:

Oral Cancer Foundation, Newport Beach, Calif. This nonprofit sent an e-mail out to major donors highlighting some of its GNP (GreatNonprofits) reviews. As a result, two new donors each gave $50,000 to the organization (which represented half of OCF's annual budget); and another, based on GNP reviews, awarded OCF $300,000 in unrestricted funding.

Chewonki Foundation, Wiscasset, Maine. This nonprofit has been around for 94 years, and thus has a very large alumni pool. When Chewonki heard about GNP, they sent one e-mail to their contact list of about 5,000 people, and within a week, 168 people had posted stories of their experiences, some of which dated back decades, on the GNP site.

North Hills Community Outreach, Allison Park, Pa. This organization has used reviews by volunteers to fine-tune their process for recruiting and training new volunteers. NHCO has a link on their home page to their GNP reviews, which has noticeably increased both the number and size of donations to the group.

Springboard Forward, Belmont, Calif. Soon after some reviews from their volunteer career coaches were posted to GNP, this organization was approached by a local business that—based the reviews—gave them an in-kind donation of much-needed office supplies.

Operation Understanding, Washington, D.C. After it attracted 188 reviews last year, this organization was able to raise an extra $3,000 in its year-end campaign from donors, despite the difficult economic climate, and it attributed this support to the GNP reviews. Now, the group is incorporating quotes from the reviews in its new brochure and other marketing materials.

Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries, Cincinnati, Ohio. After receiving 12 glowing reviews in the January Job Training and Placement Campaign, this organization was prominently featured in a local news story highlighting their placement on the top-rated list. See the video here

Ways To Use Your Reviews

If you already have reviews, use them to demonstrate your credibility and impact! You can showcase your reviews easily:

  • Link your home page to your GreatNonprofits profile.
  • Tweet your great reviews!
  • Post your reviews to your Facebook page!
  • Share your reviews internally with your staff. Your staff will appreciate it and learn from it.
  • Use your GreatNonprofits reviews in your marketing brochures, on your Web site, and in your outreach to donors, volunteers, and clients.
  • Place a free, personalized GreatNonprofits badge your Web site by following these easy steps:
    1. Find your badge at:
    2. Choose a color and size.
    3. Cut and paste the code into your Web site.

© 2010, GreatNonprofits. Reprinted from the GreatNonprofits newsletter (spring 2010). Reprinted with permission.

GreatNonprofits is a Web site where people who have firsthand knowledge of a nonprofit—board members, volunteers, donors, recipients of services—can tell others about their experiences with the organization.

Topics: Impact