[PODCAST] The Enterprise of Small Nonprofits

The Enterprise of Being a Small Nonprofit

Despite the vast majority of nonprofit organizations being small (operating budget of less than $500K), the sector seems obsessed with its most prominent members. These “enterprise-level” organizations are a tiny sliver of the good work, but we tend to give them disproportionate attention and esteem. Why? Is it wrong to be small? What if small is a better design for a particular mission? Katie talks to nonprofit expert Julia Campbell about the enterprise of being small. Julia shares why the shifting donor landscape may favor the more diminutive do-gooders. 

Next-Gen Donors: That Don’t Impress Me Much

Unlike their more senior counterparts, next-generation donors aren’t hung up on size. Size doesn’t seem to impress them, whether referring to budgets or teams. Julia points out that if a need isn’t being met fast enough, Millennials and Gen Zers tend to take matters into their own hands. While large nonprofits may have more staff and capital, they are often slower to move and laden with bureaucracy. If your organization is on the smaller side, consider it a benefit! Network with younger supporters who may be looking for an organization that is responsive and agile. 

The Benefit of Donor Trust

Julia discusses the importance of donor trust and cites recent data from the Edelman Trust Barometer. It turns out, that many donors don’t trust large organizations. Significant fraud headlines, inflated salaries, or worse have abounded in recent years. Supporters are starting to question where their support is invested. Smaller organizations have more transparency simply by having fewer layers and “hands in the pot.” That efficiency and clarity can be magnified to donors through communications like your annual report and should be apparent on your website. 

Hear all of Julia’s tips and insights when listening to the full episode here. 

All About Julia Campbell

Named as a top thought leader and one to follow by Forbes and BizTech Magazine, Julia Campbell is a nonprofit digital consultant on a mission to make the digital world a better place.  Host of the Nonprofit Nation podcast, she’s written two books for nonprofits on social media and storytelling. Her online courses, webinars, and talks have helped hundreds of nonprofits make the shift to digital thinking and raise more money online. You can learn more about Julia at www.jcsocialmarketing.com/blog


Shout out to DonorBox for making this episode possible!

Julia Campbell Small Nonprofit

Katie Appold

Katie’s nonprofit career includes a variety of leadership roles for human service, foundation, and publishing-related nonprofits as well as many volunteer roles. Under Katie’s leadership, nonprofit organizations have developed new programs related to free healthcare, affordable and accessible housing and literacy programs for K-12 students. In her first Executive Director role, Katie increased the annual revenue of the organization she led by 300% and received the top grant prize in the nation for affordable housing through the Federal Home Loan Bank of Indianapolis. Today, she leads Nonprofit Hub and Cause Camp, which collectively serve more than 50,000 nonprofits throughout North America. Her educational background includes an undergraduate degree in business administration and a masters degree in nonprofit leadership. Katie serves as the board president of Gracious Grounds, a housing organization serving individuals with disabilities. She is an active member of the Grand Rapids Young Nonprofit Professionals, the Grand Rapids Chamber of Commerce, Cause Network, and the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

May 27, 2022

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