I was recently reading a thread inside of the LinkedIn group, it was a group of predominantly young professionals. Their conversation centered around using Instagram as an annual report platform. At one level it was encouraging to read about such creativity on another it was evidence of the strength of the gravitational pull to keep things the way they have always been.
Limiting creativity to exist in our old structures will be incremental at best in improving the experience our donors appear to be craving. For example when you look at this image what do you see? An old woman?
Most likely you've seen this image 1 million times before. You know that one view is an old woman and another view is young women. Knowing this from your experience your mind can quickly turn off its ability to see something new. For example as you look at that image do see the pixels? Do you see it being displayed on the computer screen that was built somewhere? Do you understand what was going on in the lives of the people who built that screen? Where did it travel from to be in your hands? Experience is an incredibly powerful thing, but the opposite of every truth is another equal truth. Experience can also be very limiting if you aren't able to keep it in check.
In the summer of 1968 Dick Fosbury changed high jumping forever. His unique methodology for jumping the high bar changed the sport and had the Olympic Committee scratching its head. Dick discovered a better way and changed the sport, for the better.
It's possible that your donors are looking for you to create a Fosbury flop experience for them. Not that they are looking for you to jump over them backwards, but they are hopeful that you have the ability to create a new way for them to experience philanthropy. Will you tweak the past or create a completely new experience. Which do you believe will engage your best customers?