Service Options

Nonprofit Revenue Strategy

Questions You’re Asking

Which revenue streams should we invest in?

If you’re like the nonprofit leaders we meet, chances are you have asked some of these questions and wondered how to approach the answer:

  • How can we grow as an organization?
  • A major funder is reducing their contribution. What new revenue stream / source should we consider to generate income?
  • What role should fundraising play in our organization’s revenue makeup?
  • How do program fees fit into our larger revenue mix?
  • How can we be more sustainable?

Paying for Impact

A Strategic Approach to Nonprofit Revenue Strategy

The Conventional Wisdom

“If only we could get that city grant and the corporate sponsorship and the major gift, we would be set!” Whether it be at a board meeting or a strategy retreat, this notion of “more the merrier” when it comes to revenue streams is fed by the belief that an organization will be more financially secure if they diversify revenue.

Unfortunately, research shows the opposite. While some diversification is important, each revenue stream requires different focuses and skills for organizations.

Our Strategic Approach to Nonprofit Revenue Strategy

Nonprofit leaders across all mission areas are concerned about generating sufficient income. And rightfully so. Without revenue, the organization can’t achieve its impact. They also discuss their desire for a systematic way to be strategic about revenue. At Spectrum Nonprofit Services, we partner with organizations to build a sustainable revenue revenue mix, one that:

  • aligns with the organization’s impact,
  • produces flexible income, and
  • leverages the organization’s capacities.

There isn’t a silver bullet, one-size-fits-all solution for the revenue challenges faced by nonprofit organizations. By synthesizing market trends, data from tools and financial statements, and your expert perspectives, we co-create strategic priorities that will strengthen your nonprofit’s sustainability and allow for ongoing evaluation.

Tools & Templates

Bring Revenue Strategy to Your Organization

Download tools to ensure your organization is thinking strategically about its revenue strategy. Click on the question your organization is asking to access the the right template for you.

What does our current revenue mix look like? Will it support sustainability?
How do our current revenue streams align with our highest impact programs?
In which current or potential revenue streams are there growth / investment opportunities?
What are our revenue-generating capacities / strengths?

Keynote & Workshop

Paying for Impact: Which revenue streams should you invest in?

To continue mentoring youth, conducting job training, bringing art to the community, and conserving Earth’s resources, nonprofits need the revenue to do so. And while there are a myriad of ways for nonprofits to generate income, not all revenue streams make sense for every organization. Instead, leaders need to choose the revenue strategies into which the organization will invest resources. That’s easier said than done.

This session will introduce participants to our framework for strategically analyzing their organizations’ revenue strategy. We’ll explore the elements of a sustainable revenue mix, highlighting the importance of impact driving revenue strategy. We will engage participants in exercises to understand potential revenue streams and the capacities necessary for success.

By the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Differentiate between revenue diversification across revenue streams versus within streams.
  • Make connections between organizational impact and revenue strategy.
  • Understand capacities required to successfully generate revenue through different streams.
  • Determine next steps, priorities for further exploration, or areas of possible investment.


Developing, Refining, & Customizing Your Revenue Strategy

Whether through strategic planning or a process all on its own, Spectrum consultants partner with organizations to strengthen revenue strategy. By engaging the right members of your board and staff teams, we’ll collect, analyze, and visualize data to identify the right revenue strategies and areas for investment. And though we’ll be focused on revenue, the process will still recognize the deep interconnectedness between income and impact, an important concept to ensure sustainability.

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