Three key stats that show how we can transform our return on good to Give Smarter

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Three key stats that show how we can Give Smarter for the greatest return on good.

When we launched Return On Good, we discovered three big stats that became the foundation of our charitable giving strategy:

  • In 2021, GivingUSA estimates that Americans gave $484.5 Billion to charities.
  • There are 1.5 Million registered non-profits in the US.
  • Researchers estimate that only 3% of givers compare charities before they make a gift.

That’s right, hundreds of billions of dollars are being given away every year with very little strategy.

When we went out to talk to our fellow givers, family foundations, and their advisors, we heard things like:

“My clients really don’t want to give to the bloated salary of some charity executive. I want to help people in need.”

“We have some big charity giving to do, but we’re just treading water, because I really don’t know where our best investment will be.”

“I’m giving locally now. There are so many great causes that I didn’t know about in my own backyard.”

“We put the money into a fund but honestly, it’s sitting. We make some small gift dispersals, but the big ones are just…waiting.”

“I gave to one group and they just constantly kept inviting me to expensive dinners. I’m like…I’m here to feed kids, not me, please stop!”

These quotes echo what Americans are feeling. In fact, there’s a real “generosity crisis,” with a steep decline in the number of households giving to formal charities at all. Americans are still incredibly generous, they’re just more dubious of large, bureaucratic organizations.

That’s where our strategic giving approach comes in. We’re the first collaborative to combine three key things into real strategy: the values of a donor, a focus on the greatest impact, and the “why” of a cause.

The ROG Approach To Strategic Giving

This three-part approach takes time, effort, and practice. Evaluating a giving opportunity to seek the greatest impact takes research, and sometimes tough questions to a charity. Learning what a charity hopes to do today, and maybe down the line takes an in-depth conversation with transparency. And matching it all up the real values of you, the donor, requires listening.

It’s not surprising that big givers often feel stalled. We all want to give to the greatest impact, but few of us are experts on evaluating initiatives, tax forms, or choosing the perfect giving vehicle. We learn something new every day at ROG, and we love to share.

If you’d like to take your giving to the next level, or you’re a charity who wants to engage donors strategically, not just with a bunch of expensive dinners, drop us a line. We’re ready to help make a match that propels everyone’s mission forward, and help you get unstuck so you can experience the true joy of giving. Let’s connect contact