Maximize Development and Marketing with CRM Software

Development and Marketing enhanced by CRM

Since it was first conceived in the late 1980s, integrated marketing communication (IMC) has become the predominant method of marketing. The concept focuses on integration across all marketing tactics, projecting a unified message to customers regardless of the outlet. In this article, I share with you my thoughts into CRM Software for nonprofits and how it may assist in helping donor development officers and marketing align more effectively in their shared purpose.

Is Lack of CRM Software Impacting Alignment in your Nonprofit?

The methodology of IMC may be replaced with new terminology. IMC is now sometimes referred to SMarketing. SMarketing is the alignment and connection between sales and marketing. Since Sales (Development & Membership Executives) and Marketing work closely together in most nonprofits organizations, it’s often typical for these two groups to sometimes compete with one another. But if you improve SMarketing at your nonprofit, you’ll likely sale more memberships and increase donor contributions.

Whether you are a nonprofit or for profit, marketing and sales alignment (whatever you call it) is more important than ever. Competition for donor mind-share is at an all time high. And, nowadays buyers expect a seamless brand experience across channels. And as more nonprofits invest in delivering fluid member experiences, the delight of receiving the right message at the right time becomes more than a nice-to-have; it becomes an expectation. From working in both nonprofit and for profit, this expectation is no different for all types of organizations.

Now back to the concept of IMC. In many instances I have observed, the ideology of IMC falls to the wayside when it comes to the integration of marketing and revenue (or, for non-profit, donations, booth sales, memberships etc.). Marketing seeks to attract constituent interest and generate brand advocates, at which point the development department takes over and seeks to convert these supporters (leads) into donors with their own messages and strategies.

What if you could align your strategies across your company into an integrated marketing and donation effort? I believe that CRM Software for many nonprofits can do just that. And, I believe that doing so creates a number of significant advantages. Here are a few:

A Unified Message

First, an integrated approach to donations and marketing allows your nonprofit to project a unified message about your products and services to your audience. From the first touch all the way to closing the sale, your audience will know exactly what to expect and why they should donate to your cause.

Added Information

As any development officer knows, the more information you have about a potential donor, the better. Marketing can gather that information through its various analytics tools, and an integrated approach ensures that the information gets passed on and is included in the CRM for easy access. Armed with that added information, development officers can touch on important decision points and influences when asking for donations.

Higher Donor and Member Revenue

Ultimately, a unified message and more information for your sales or donations team will lead to higher revenue and business growth. Research shows that companies who are integrated from the first until the final touch become 67 percent better at closing with their ask, achieve a 24 percent higher revenue growth, and retain 36 percent more customers or donors.

Stated differently, can your nonprofit afford not to align their development and marketing approaches? Chances are you’ll be better off if you do. And, the nonprofits which I see doing this excel.

To learn more about how Customer Relationship Management software can help your nonprofit, contact us. Until next time, keep SmartThoughts in mind.

Customer Relationship Management Software is about relationships!

CRM For Nonprofit Organizations, CRM for Nonprofit, Not for Profit CRM, Best CRM Nonprofit is about Relationships,

The nonprofit world is all about creating and managing relationships with its constituents.  So, why is it that some nonprofits don’t spend more time and focus on developing new and existing relationships? Maybe it’s because many nonprofits are simply complicating the matter and need the help of software automation such as Customer Relationship Management to assist in developing their programs. Below you will find several simple ways using a good CRM system may help develop relationships at your nonprofit.

The Secret of CRM is Building Relationships 

1.  Consolidate… Avoid Disparate Data Syndrome!

This article  posted some time ago underscores the process some nonprofits use to manage their relationships.  The results are alarming:

Over half the small to medium-sized nonprofits who responded said they store information about contacts in more than four different places. In fact, 20% said they store it in more than ten places! Many of them use solutions that make it hard for the whole staff to access it – 58% used Excel, 52% used a personal contact manager like Outlook, and an alarming 55% reported using slips of paper.

Storing information in 10 places and using slips of paper is a really bad idea.  All of that information represents a valuable relationship and connection you have with someone who believes in your mission.  A CRM helps you treat each of your constituents as a whole person by allowing you to see how they have engaged with you in the past while also showing the many ways they relate to your organization. When you have all of their data in the same place, you can clearly see who people are, thank them for their previous donations, and facilitate a deeper relationship between your organization. Do not minimize the value of those relationships with sloppy Customer Relationship Management business practices.

2.  Relationships matter:

It almost sounds like a cliché, but it’s still true; a solid service relationship matters.  If you want your donors and friends to continue to champion your cause with their friends, you have to go above and beyond normal service.  Consider this story as an example:

A widow learned about a particular charity through a friend. She decided to donate because she was so taken with what the organization did for physically challenged children. She gave $50 online at the organization’s website. She got a minimal receipt by email but never received a thank you letter in the mail nor any other communication from the organization. She never donated again.

How much time would it have taken to pick up the telephone and contact a first time donor? At the most, five minutes.  If the organization would have investigated a little more deeply, they might have learned about the widow and her connection to the organization.  As it stands now, the organization will never know, and likely not grow their donor base.  Look for ways to make small “touches” that will yield second and third conversations with your donors.  You will double and triple your returns.  How can you keep tabs on all of those “touches”? Wouldn’t it be worthwhile to know the digital foot print of your constituents?  A small investment in a software system may make your Customer Relationship Management more manageable.

3.  Time is Money:

One of the common objections to Customer Relationship Management software is the cost.  Does it really save you in the long run if you don’t have an efficient system in place?  You spend countless hours tracking down people who know “something” about donors, and then cobbling their memories together to try to build solid connections with your donors. And, what happens when your development officer who know everything leaves your nonprofit?  Your nonprofit pays employees to do the work at hand, however, the intellectual capital stored on each donor, volunteer, or vendor doesn’t have to go when he/she does.

The reality is this, cost should be a small obstacle to overcome in comparison to the relationships you potentially harm because you do not have a “single version of truth” in a quality software program.  Your time is valuable.  Your mission is critical, and no one is making it happen if you are always spending your working hours trying to decipher someone else’s handwritten notes. With Customer Relationship Management, people in your organization start to get on the same page, thinking similarly about business practices, using the same tools and building relationships with the same constituents. Building stronger relationships is the secret to increasing your chances to grow your donor and member population.

To talk more about how Customer Relationship Management Software can play a significant role in your nonprofit, please Contact Us.

Until next time, keep SmartThoughts in mind.

CRM for Nonprofit free advice and consultations