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The United Way Business Model Explained

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United Way Worldwide

on 12 August 2016

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Transcript of The United Way Business Model Explained

Overview of the United Way business model
United Ways across the world support their communities in setting priorities and delivering real impact in Education, Income & Health. We bring sectors together to
develop integrated solutions that improve lives and communities
busi·ness mod·el
1. a design for the successful operation of a business, identifying revenue sources, customer base, products, and details of financing.
The United Way business model is designed to deliver “
the right product to the right person in the right way to drive revenue.

Recently, UWW surveyed the general public to ask:
The good news is that United Ways can address #2 and #3 by building our infrastructures around strategies like developing channels and segmentation to strengthen execution of our business model.
In order to drive revenue, we must
know our donors
frame our work in ways that resonate
with them.

To effectively connect with donors, it’s critical to discover as much about them as possible -
especially in the workplace
- to understand what they like and don’t like. Which market segments care about which products/causes, and how do they want to engage?

Using this information, we can group donors into ‘segments’ in order to best take our product to market.
Once segmented,
we can begin to
multiple pathways to
, like developing digital
strategies, asking people to
help build the solutions, and providing opportunities to Give, Advocate, and Volunteer that are tailored to resonate with specific donors. This
creates a unique experience with the United Way brand
, resulting in deeper, more personal connections to our cause.
We are in the business of creating impact, and the donor is our customer.

Executing on the business model assumes there’s a strong impact agenda – developed with and through the community – already in place. The goal of engaging and segmenting our markets is to understand what those markets care about within our agenda, and how to effectively connect them to those issues. By framing our impact work as a product to invest in or a cause to commit to, we can drive increased revenue to fund our mission.
The business model’s
success relies on a solid organizational foundation
. In order to get the cycle moving, a United Way must have:

A clear understanding of the business model, the change that is required to execute the business model and risks to mitigate during transition
Integrated functional areas aligned to support the business model
Employees with competencies to perform well
Solid and transparent governance and finance practices
An engaged CEO, senior team and volunteer structure

Is your United Way ready strengthen your business model to drive revenue?

Identify opportunities for your United Way now!
Communities already turn to United Way to solve pressing problems.

By executing the business model, we deliver results AND grow revenue.
To execute the business model effectively, we must answer the question: “How do we make money and grow our impact work in our communities?”

Being donor-centric helps us raise the revenue necessary to maximize our impact.

Delivering impact results requires a strong agenda and strategic use of resources. Our Network-Wide Strategy includes five imperatives that are key to United Way's strong future - the 5 Bold Plays.

Bold Play 1 asks us to execute a clear business model that connects our donors to our local impact.
Economic factors

Didn't feel a
personal connection
to the organization/cause

Not aware of United Way or
what we do
“Why did you choose not to donate to United Way this year?”
United Way of Broward County (Fort Lauderdale, FL) frames their MISSION UNITED veteran’s services as a product for donors to invest in.

As a result of this execution of the business model, they've seen:

Campaign increase of 6% and 9%
$600,000 to MISSION UNITED annually
Almost 10% donor growth from 2013 – 2014
$2,000,000 federal grant for homeless vets
$1,200,000 capital campaign
Increases year-round corporate engagement

United Way of Broward County has put MISSION UNITED front and center for their donor segments - from workplace campaign to national funding partners. They attribute the program to increased gifts and new donor acquisition.
Example of Business Model Execution MISSION UNITED

The drivers of the United Way business model work to grow our revenue, impact & relevance locally.
1) Improve overall development & expression of impact/causes
2) Deeply engage employees in the workplace
3) Reignite corporate partnerships
4) Secure Tocqueville, Major & Transformational gifts from high net-worth individuals for impact/causes
5) Align & integrate organizational functions & practices for results
The result...
critical to improve our existing channels
– such as rebuilding the mechanics of a best-in-class workplace campaign or a major giving strategy – while innovating to embrace new channels and platforms.
MISSION UNITED answers the question "What does United Way do?"

Funder. Convener. Advocate. Fundraiser.
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