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AFP Quick Polls

AFP is composed of experienced, wise members who have their pulse on the world of fundraising and philanthropy, so who better to help inform and educate us on the latest mood, developments, and directions in the field?  To better capture your thoughts and impressions, we have developed a new Quick Poll area on the homepage of, where – once a month – we will post a new, relevant, and timely poll question for you to answer.  After a month, we tabulate the results, develop an article based on them, and when appropriate use these findings to help shape the way AFP approaches an issue.

If you have an idea for a survey poll question, please send it to

Current Quick Poll

Quick Poll #27 (Posted Jan. 25, 2016):
Question: What is the most critical professional development area for you this year: Leadership/management | Direct response | Major gifts | Planned gifts | Online/social media | Board management | Other
Visit the homepage to vote now!

Previous Quick Poll Results

Quick Poll #26 (Closed Jan. 25, 2016):
Question: How is your fundraising so far in 2015 compared to the same time in 2014: A lot better in 2015 so far | A little better in 2015 so far | About the same so far | A little worse in 2015 so far | A lot worse in 2015 so far

Quick Poll #25 (April 1, 2014-Dec. 31, 2014):
Question: What is the most critical professional development area for you this year: Leadership/management | Direct response | Major gifts | Planned gifts | Online/social media | Board management | Other

Quick Poll #24 (Nov. 1, 2013- April 1, 2014):
Question: By the end of the year, do you anticipate your 2013 total giving will be: Much more than 2012 totals | A little more than 2012 totals | About the same as 2012 totals | A little less than 2012 totals | Much less than 2012 totals

Quick Poll #23 (Mar. 25-Nov. 1, 2013):
Question: Do you anticipate your total compensation level in 2013 will: Increase | Decrease | Stay the same | Unsure | Not currently employed

Quick Poll #22 (Dec. 16, 2012-Mar. 25, 2013):
Question: Has your organization experienced an increase in year-end gifts (compared to 2011) because of uncertainty about the charitable deduction and other potential tax changes? Yes, and uncertainty has been given as a reason | Yes, but it is unclear whether uncertainly is a reason | No, though uncertainly has been given as a reason for certain gifts | No, and it's unclear whether uncertainty weighed into any gift decisions | Unsure

Quick Poll #21 (July 1-Dec. 16, 2012):
Question: Professional development is the cornerstone of your successful fundraising career. Tell us which two ways of delivering education are the most useful/beneficial to you: Face-to-face events | Webinars | Podcasts/Purchased Recordings | Video | Hardcopy materials (books, manuals)

Quick Poll #20 (Apr. 19-July 1, 2012):
Question: Which internal factors/challenges are preventing your organization from having the greatest impact on its cause and philanthropy? (Choose all that apply): Fundraising budget | Lack of development staff | Fundraising knowledge and skills | Technology resources and infrastructure | Case for support/fundraising plan/strategic plan | Communications, messaging and brand | CEO not understanding/involved in fundraising | Board not understanding/involved in fundraising | Lack of creativity and innovation | Other
Results Article: The Results Are In: AFP Poll Finds Staffing, Board Support of Top Concern to Fundraisers

Quick Poll #19 (Jan. 2-Apr. 19, 2012):
Question: Which social networking sites does your organization use for public outreach, including donor relations, public relations, branding, etc? Facebook | Twitter | Linkedin | MySpace | Ning | Google Plus+ | Meetup | A closed (members-only) network | Other | None

Quick Poll #18 (Nov. 2, 2011-Jan. 2, 2012):
Question: Right now, what services and information do you need most to help you be successful as a fundraiser? (check all that apply) Practical, how-to articles | Interviews with fundraisers and donors | Sample documents and forms | Case studies/success stories | Mentoring programs | Networking opportunities | Research and benchmarking materials | Articles and new thinking from business leaders | Reviews of fundraising products | More educational opportunities | Other

Quick Poll #17 (Sept. 26-Nov. 2, 2011):
Question: Has your organization already or is it planning to hire fundraising positions in 2011, and what sorts of positions are they? (check all that apply) We will not be doing any hiring in 2011 | We have or will be hiring someone in direct mail/annual fund | We have or will be hiring someone in grant writing | We have or will be hiring someone in online/social media | We have or will be hiring someone in major gifts | We have or will be hiring someone in admin support | We have or will be hiring someone in planned giving | We have or will be hiring someone in special events | We have or will be hiring someone as a generalist/other area not mentioned

Quick Poll #16 (June 20-Sept. 25, 2011):
Question: How is your use of direct mail changing? It’s not. It’s still the key driver of our fundraising efforts | It’s not. It’s still an equal part of our fundraising efforts | We’re increasing its usage in 2011 | We’re using less direct mail in favor of emails/social media

Quick Poll #15 (April 18-June 19, 2011):
Question: The White House's FY2012 budget includes a proposal to decrease the charitable deduction for giving. What impact do you envision this having on your organization? No effect at all on donor gifts | Perhaps a small drop (~5%) in donor gifts | A small but significant drop (~10-20%) in donor gifts | A sizeable drop (~25% or more) in donor gifts | Not sure the effect it will have

Quick Poll #14 (February 28, 2011-April 17, 2011):
Question: Fundraising can be exhilarating, but also nerve-wracking at times. What part of your job makes you the most apprehensive? Making the ask to a major donor | Making a call to a prospective donor | Trying to get your board involved in fundraising | Writing fundraising copy | Writing a grant application | Working with new technology | Other
Results Article: Fundraisers Reveal Most Anxious Moments

Quick Poll #13 (January 19-February 28, 2011):
Question: "What if...?"  Looking back and knowing what you now know, being a fundraiser has been... The right career/job for me–wouldn't change a thing | Inspiring and definitely worth it despite being difficult at times | A continuing journey–It’s growing on me but I am still not sure | Too new to know for sure but I like it so far | An up and down job–there are days I question my choice | Not what I expected/still considering my options | The wrong choice for me–my skill sets don't relate well to it

Quick Poll #12 (December 6, 2010-January 19, 2011):
Question: What type of ethical dilemma are you most likely to face in your fundraising work? Percentage-based compensation/commissions | Conflict of interest | Privacy/confidentiality of information | Use of donated funds | Exploiting a donor relationship | Donor control of gift | Other
Results Article: Use of Donated Funds Most Common Ethical Challenge for Fundraisers

Quick Poll #11 (November 8-December 6, 2010):
Question: In your experiences with donors and the public, do they understand the meaning and value of the CFRE and/or ACFRE designations? Yes, they know it denotes a high level of fundraising certification | Yes, maybe not the actual meaning but they understand the designations are a mark of skill or authentication | No, I have to explain it to them | No, they don’t notice it

Quick Poll #10 (October 4-November 8, 2010):
Question: How would you measure your fundraising during the first nine months of 2010 (Jan.-Sept.) compared to the same period in 2009? We raised significantly more funds to date in 2010 | We raised more funds to date in 2010 | We raised about the same funds to date in 2010 as in 2009 |We raised less funds to date in 2010
Results Article: Fast Facts: AFP Poll Shows Fundraising News Brighter Than ‘09

Quick Poll #9 (September 1-October 3, 2010):
Question: Recent reports indicate that while the disasters in Haiti and Chile received extensive media coverage and donations, others (such as the current flooding in Pakistan and India) have not. Why do you think this is so? [check all that apply]: Disaster fatigue – too many disasters around the world to respond to | Disaster depression – too much bad news all the time | Lack of response as a result of geographical distance or cultural or political differences | The economy remains uncertain, so donors are being extremely cautious with their own finances | Too many causes and charities make it difficult to make decisions that will have impact | Other

Quick Poll #8 (July 20 - August 30, 2010):
Question: How often during your fundraising do you find yourself confronted with an ethical situation, challenge or dilemma?: Less than once a month | Once a month | 2-3 times a month | Once a week | 2-3 times a week | Once a day | More than once a day
Results Article: Most Fundraisers Face Few Ethical Situations

Quick Poll #7 (June 7 - July 19, 2010):
Question: The recent crises in Haiti and Chile highlighted the powerful fundraising possibilities that mobile texting can offer to causes. The following best describes your mobile texting campaign efforts:
We have met all regulatory requirements, have engaged in a mobile text fundraising campaign, and found it successful/worthwhile | We have met all regulatory requirements, have engaged in a mobile text fundraising campaign, but it was not successful/worthwhile | We have met all regulatory requirements, but have yet to engaged in a mobile text fundraising campaign | We are currently exploring how to use mobile texting for fundraising | We were unable to meet regulatory requirements and/or found the requirements too much a barrier to pursue | We are not interested in pursuing mobile texting for fundraising and/or this is not something for us | What’s a “mobile text fundraising campaign”?

Quick Poll #6 (April 4 - June 6, 2010):
Question: What fundraising technique/type do you believe will experience the largest growth for your organization in 2010? Direct mail | Telemarketing | Major gifts/planned gifts | Special events | Online giving/social media | Corporate support (grants, sponsorships, etc.) | Foundation support | Text/mobile giving
Results Article: Fundraisers Expect Largest Gains in Major Gifts, Online Giving in 2010

Quick Poll #5 (February 8 - April 3, 2010):
Question: Dust off your crystal ball and gaze deeply.... This time next year, looking back at 2010, I will find that: We raised more funds in 2010 than in 2009 | We raised the same in 2010 as in 2009 | We raised less in 2010 than in 2009 

Quick Poll #4 (January 11-February 8, 2010):
Question: Do you anticipate your total compensation in 2010 will: Increase | Decrease | Stay the same | Uncertain | Currently unemployed
Results Article: Poll Shows Signs of Optimism in Fundraising Salaries

Quick Poll #3 (December 1, 2009 - January 10, 2010):
Question: A recent study reveals that companies actively engaged in social media report higher financial performance. What has been your experience?
Results Article: Many Nonprofits Using Social Media, Few Measuring Value
Related Article: Social Media Performance Linked to Financial Success

Quick Poll #2 (October 20- November 30, 2009):
Question: The White House has proposed decreasing the charitable deduction for giving to help pay for healthcare reform. Will this proposal hurt your organization’s fundraising?
Results Article: Decreasing Value of Charitable Deduction Would Have Negative Impact, Many Charities Say

Quick Poll #1 (September 10 - October 19, 2009)
Question: Compared to the same time period in 2008, how is your organization's fundraising now faring?
Results Article:
Charitable Giving Down So Far in 2009, But Critical Giving Period Coming Up

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