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Fundraising 2008

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Mainpage for the 2008 Fundraiser.

Post Mortem for the 2008 Annual Fundraiser

See also /Report

As many of you know, the 2008 Annual Fundraiser succeeded in exceeding its $6 million dollar goal. The fundraiser started on November 4th, 2008 and ended on January 9th, 2009 with a happy blog entry: http://blog.wikimedia.org/2009/01/10/winding-down-the-0809-fundraiser/.

We had over 130,000 gifts during the fundraiser and they averaged over 30 USD. We had support from all over the globe in many different currencies.

You can find final graphs and charts on the fundraiser:

Reasons for Success


Fabulous Community Input: The Wikimedia Foundation enjoyed amazing contributions of time and effort from many experienced volunteers and translators that enabled us to not only build the donation site, but also get the message out to so many different communities.

Rebuild Donation Site: Our rebuilt donation page (http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate/Now/en) was another reason for our increase...it made it easier to give, clarified information, showed enhanced transparency, and everything was more usable to our donors.

Better Messaging: From the start of the fundraiser until the end, we tested and refined our messaging towards getting more donations. We tested both educational and emotional appeals in efforts to spur giving. You can read about those here: http://blog.wikimedia.org/2008/11/25/wikimedias-fundraiser-which-banners-click/ and here: http://blog.wikimedia.org/2008/12/06/site-notices-people-actually-read-them/.

Enhanced Communications: From the beginning, our public relations staff person, Jay Walsh, worked enormously hard to craft a PR campaign for the fundraiser. He succeeded helping with both the messaging and getting exposure for the fundraiser. In addition, the Wikimedia Foundation produced its first ever Annual Report (link) that was sent to past donors. In late October, we also began sending email Thank You letters to our donors.

The Jimmy Wales Appeal: Chronicled here: http://blog.wikimedia.org/2008/12/30/fundraiser-jimmys-appeal/. Jimmy's letter really hit the spot with our users...it touched the right spots with impact and a compelling case for support. It was a wonderful way to end the fundraiser.

Room for Improvement


We had an entirely new fundraising team running this Annual Fundraiser ( http://blog.wikimedia.org/2008/06/26/wikimedia-foundation-announces-new-staff-appointments/ and http://blog.wikimedia.org/2008/07/12/welcome-sara-crouse-to-the-wmf-staff/) and, to be honest, the learning curve for the entirety of the Wikimedia projects is pretty steep. Thankfully, we had great support from old hands and volunteers to help us make the fundraiser work, but there is plenty of room for improvement.

We strive to improve and address the following for the 2009 Annual Fundraiser:

High Priority:

  1. Accept credit cards directly
  2. Re-design donation page for even more usability
  3. Accept Indian rupees, Iranian Rial and other currencies
  4. Revised Q and A section to reflect more of frequently asked questions
  5. Added tax-deductible availability for additional countries

Medium Priority:

  1. The live donation map
  2. Foreign Language Thank You letters
  3. Increased statistical tracking
  4. Increased Social Marketing Outreach
  5. Increased focus on Corporate Matching Giving
  6. Mobile Donations
  7. Appropriate Minimum Donations

Low Priority:

  1. Recurring donations ability (monthly, yearly)
  2. Better graphics/A more quickly updating thermometer
  3. "Invite a Friend" email option
  4. Honor/Memorial donation options
  5. Easier to search Donor Comments page

Additional Wishlist Items for 2009

  • Language-based tracking (ie. how many people donated from the German versus the Japanese notices/pages)
  • Wiki-based tracking (ie. how many from Wiktionary versus Wikibooks)
  • CentralNotice
    • Fallback languages for sitenotice (ie. if we don't have a translation in jv, show id instead of English)
    • LOG :-) (for changes made via the centralnotice admin interface; especially with a comment field)
  • some people brought up localized paypal as a wish

Annual Fundraiser 2008 Notes


Pages to be translated