The Facebook fundraiser tool will not be free. This isn’t a surprise – it’d be very optimistic and perhaps a little naïve to expect that Facebook would give such a gift without expecting something in return. The current line from Facebook is that pricing will be on par or lower than current industry trends, so probably cheaper than JustGiving to really stick the knife in. How this will work with your reach on the network, whether your fundraiser will be targeted like the ads or if you need to pay more to get increased reach is currently unknown.
There are charities who would never consider fundraising through Facebook previously due to the cost; with this tool there really is no argument, unless a global audience of 150 million and a quick, easy donation process is in some way not in the best interest of your charity.
We tried really hard to not get too excited about this tool. It didn’t work. This will make a huge difference to a lot of charities. We’ll have to wait until it’s released before we can really get to grips with the reality of using it day-to-day, but, without a doubt, this marks a big change in digital fundraising.
Whether that change will be a good one remains to be seen, we doubt likes of JustGiving will be regaling the arrival of this new tool, and for good reason. It will certainly have it benefits for those who use the tool but Facebook have been accused of prioritising their own platforms and claiming it’s “in the interests of the user” while reaping many of the benefits. A useful tool it might be, we must be cautious about a limited, monopolised market and the effects it could have on the wider fundraising sector.