Gen X a Rising Force in Canadian Philanthropy; Boomers and Civics Most Generous

Gen X a Rising Force in Canadian Philanthropy; Boomers and Civics Most Generous

News (International)

2013 Next Generation of Canadian Giving  uncovers the preferred giving and communication channels of four generations of Canadian donors: Generation Y (18-32); Generation X (33-48); Baby Boomers (49-67); and Civics (68+).

Among the study’s findings: Gen X is a rising force in philanthropy in Canada — quickly gaining on Boomers and Civics, the most generous generations. The study, which builds on a similar study conducted in 2010, is based on a major national survey of more than 800 Canadian donors, commissioned by Blackbaud, and produced by hjc, Edge Research and SeaChange Strategies.

“It is critical for non-profits to address each generation so that they can attract and retain new donors without compromising revenue from their existing donor base,” said Michael Johnston, founder and president of hjc. “This study provides both strategic and practical guidance for fundraisers by demonstrating how Canadian donors in different age segments want to be communicated with and how they typically respond.”

Additional key findings of the study include:

  • Gen X is giving in high numbers and is an important generation to watch.
  • Multichannel is the new normal. While all generations are multi-channel in their communications habits, the ideal mix varies from generation to generation.
  • Direct mail is far from dead, but it also won’t last forever. Gen Y and X are far more likely to give online, and as many Baby Boomers say they give online as via direct mail.
  • Generation Y has distinct priorities and preferences with regard to causes they support. Notably, they are far more likely to demand accountability and transparency than older donors.
  • The value of some channels, e.g. social media, is undervalued if measured by transaction, as opposed to engagement and metrics. 

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