We've all heard the phrase: "it's too good to be true."
Companies pitching a service often offers big guarantees and promises that feel hopeful at best, and shady at worst. As a church leader, I'm quite familiar with these situations. Every day I come across products that promise the world, yet I have to discern the actual truthfulness of those statements.
Will it actually make a difference for my organization?
So I can imagine the thoughts that flooded your mind as you came across the title of this blog. I’ve had them.
The ROI is inevitable…. yeah but, really?
When I started Overflow, the mission was always to first and foremost add value, in order to create an experience that significantly benefits both the donor and organization alike. We want to be the magnifying glass that turns a spark into a flame, not a heavy blanket that douses possibilities.
What do I mean by "add value?"
We want to add value to your organization, both intrinsically and monetarily. Intrinsically, we want to empower churches and nonprofits as they grapple with a changing giving landscape by providing the support and practical tools needed to maximize their impact.
It's 2022, and the increasingly digital economy has opened up a myriad of new possibilities when it comes to giving. That was part of what led me to start Overflow: how do we harness these new digital tools for the greater good?
Thus far, we've partnered with several churches and nonprofits across the country, such as RIP Medical Debt and VIVE Church, to name a couple. While each organization's purpose and mission differs, the common thread has been a desire to simplify arduous giving processes and remove unnecessary barriers to giving. I've witnessed great successes flow from the use of our online giving platform, which boils down the stock and crypto giving process to a few clicks.
That said, I recognize the weight of making a decision that completely changes the way things have always been done. There's always the risk of "what if it doesn't work out?" "What if people don't give?"
That's a valid thought and fear, and as a pastor I'm familiar with having to take leaps of faith that don't often make sense to everyone else. However, it's important to remember that it's not Overflow or a giving platform that brings in the resources. We're simply a means to facilitate and to amplify the generosity that already exists in your community. And I've seen how giving can spread like wildfire, and that the world of the generous gets larger and larger.
But perhaps you're still skeptical. I get it. If you have a few minutes, I'd love to walk through the benefits of Overflow from a purely numbers standpoint to show that by partnering with us, the return on your investment is not a matter of if, but when.
Most don't enjoy math class or crunching numbers, but if you can bear a brief trip back to your grade school days, we'll break down some data to show that Overflow a.) does not have to be a financial burden, and b.) quickly pays for itself by opening new funding avenues and opportunities.
Let’s play math class
The words math or class might take you back to late nights cramming for that Calculus exam, or hours spent trying to figure out partial fraction decomposition.
I promise won't get into any of that. However, let's run some basic numbers.
Packages with Overflow include an upfront cost plus a processing fee. That may sound steep, until you consider what the average person donates. The average donation through Overflow is $9,000+, which is 70x higher than the average online donation through ACH/Debit/Credit. With one donation, most of our partners immediately cancel out the upfront cost and fees.
How is it that Overflow has such a high average donation rate?
Overflow specifically handles the receiving of stock and cryptocurrency donations, which tend to be much larger investments and amounts, as opposed to donations made from a traditional checking account. We will unpack some statistics later on that show how much of an untapped resource stocks are.
This seems like something specifically tailored for millennials. Do they even give that much?
Actually, millennials (despite their presumed reputation as transient, apathetic, or self-absorbed) are quite passionate about causes, and that's reflected in their giving habits. A report by Define Financial found that 84% of millennials give to charities and nonprofits, with an average donation of $481 yearly.
Again, if Overflow's startup cost is a sticking point, or if you fear that your organization or church doesn't have "big time donors," it still only takes a relatively small amount of people to instantly break even. The collective donations of 12 millennials giving close to $500 each would pay for Overflow's services. Everything from beyond that point would become surplus.
- Also, there's a compelling case to be made that millennials would give more if not for the following factors:
- Millennials aren't likely to carry cash, and therefore aren't going to be dropping dollars in the offering buckets or mailing in checks.
- Millennials are increasingly being paid bonuses in stock or seeking to invest their money in alternative investments, such as cryptocurrencies.
- Millennials are less likely to give if accessibility is an issue (i.e. they can't give from their phone or device, or have to go through extra hurdles like printing or faxing in forms.)
On a practical level, Overflow addresses those issues by existing digitally, accepting cryptocurrencies and stock donations, and handling the nuts-and-bolts of facilitating those transactions.
But statistically speaking, millennials are likely to only comprise 10% of your giving base. In all likelihood, you'll be courting a majority of baby boomers, who statistically give quite generously to nonprofits and churches (roughly $1,200 per year on average). This is also a generation likely to have held appreciated stock for a long time, and looking to either get tax benefits or increase their philanthropic giving.
To move past the theoretical, let's look at a real-life example:
Overflow recently forged a partnership with Bay-area based Vive Church. In the midst of a building campaign in which they needed to raise funds quickly, Vive Church approached Overflow about maximizing donations in a short span of time. Here's an excerpt from the case study:
"Just 45 days into accepting stock and crypto donations, they were able to raise $6 million, 90% of which came as a direct result of Overflow's assistance. Half of that $6 million given was stock, a unique asset that has the potential to grow and be a revenue source for quite some time."
The telling figure from that case study is that $3 million was given in stock. It's unlikely that the figure would've been that high if drawn from credit or debit donations.
As Vive's CFO Aaron Williams remarked: "I know for a fact that without Overflow we wouldn’t have raised the $3M [in stock]."
In essence, Vive Church's upfront payment to Overflow was multiplied a thousand-fold, and that figure is just for that specific building campaign. Vive's partnership with Overflow continues to help maximize their giving today.
"But our donors don’t have stock…"
You might be thinking all of this sounds great if people have stock in the first place. And in increasingly uncertain financial times / a world recovering from a pandemic, you may be skeptical about if people even have the means to give – especially in the form of stocks.
However, statistics show that the majority of people do own stock, and that it's a massive untapped resource:
"90% of the average American citizen’s wealth is in non-cash or complex assets, such as stock or business interest," says the Signatry, a website specializing in nonprofit resources.
In our recent article "Not Convinced Your Donors Have Stock? Think Again," we make an extensive case to show that there's a high likelihood that your donor base owns stock or other appreciating resources, but have lacked either the awareness or how to give it. Some don't even realize it's an option in the first place.
But for the purposes of this article, I want to emphasize that giving via stock is a more lucrative option, as it truly maximizes the gift by avoiding being hit by taxes (such as capital gains.) Moreover, it has the potential to elevate total giving by providing an appealing option for your donors. Think of it this way: if you were drilling for oil but lacked the oil rig necessary to tap in, you'd be missing out on a potentially huge source. By adding the tools, you carve out a completely new channel for resources to flow.
The takeaway? People have stocks but have lacked a platform to give them. Per Fidelity Charitable, "80 percent of donors own appreciated assets, such as stocks, mutual funds or bonds, but only 21 percent of those donors have contributed these types of assets to charity."
That stat shows that either people are reluctant to give stock, or simply don't know how. Based on the aforementioned stats of millennials and baby boomers' giving habits, it's likely the latter.
With Overflow, you're paying a small price to unlock a huge wave of funding opportunities.
Learn More / Book a Demo
To reinforce the point made at the beginning: I want any kind of engagement you have with us to be positive, personal, and pressure-free. For us, the whole point is building relationships and helping the world of the generous grow larger. Generosity is something that people do out of their own hearts, and thus your decision to partner with us or not should be one made with careful discernment and intention.
By providing the above stats and figures, we're simply trying to illustrate the point that there's no catch. No hidden manipulation. Only proven results.
Whether you're simply curious about us or want to take the first steps in a potential partnership, I encourage you to do the following:
- Book an Overflow Demo: This will be a 15 minute call in which we walk you through the entire process of a potential partnership and answer any questions you might have.
- Follow up with an Overflow member. If you’ve ever spoken to an Overflow member, they'd be happy to continue the conversation.
- Read our blogs and check out our website to get a better understanding of the way we've partnered with other organizations and helped maximize their giving impact.