How Nonprofit CRM Builds Better Donor Relationships, Retains More Donors & Grows Giving. Nonprofit MBA Podcast 3.18
Summary: In today’s podcast episode,Gabe Cooper from Virtuous, and Stephen Halasnik from Financing Solutions discuss how nonprofit CRM can help build relationships with donors. Knowing how to build better relationships with donors will help you grow and expand your nonprofit in the future.
Most Important Things When Building Strong Donor Relationships
Giving away is considered very important and personal. As a nonprofit CRM, they have to figure out how to be more personal with their donors at scale. They have to connect with their individual passions and understand why they donated to the cause in the first place.
Using a CRM system is very important when trying to ask the right questions and know who you are dealing with in the first place. It allows you to know everything about the client you are working with. These components are very critical to nonprofit CRM’s success.
Technology is a huge aspect of building stronger donor relationships. You can make automated messages to enhance the experience of the donor. New technology makes it easier to communicate with donors because there are so many ways to get across the message.
3 Most Important Parts of Nonprofit CRM Software
From a feature point of view, the 3 most important parts include it being a place to store data and get insights, automate the next steps with each donor, and have seamless giving experiences to make it really easy.
When looking at it from a higher-level point of view, it is important to think in terms of the responsive framework which incorporates listening, connecting, and suggesting. The entire team should listen to the donors really well and know everything about them. Tools are needed to connect with the donors you come across. Communication is very important when you want to reach out at the right time. Lastly, how you can suggest the next step at the right time to donors.
There are rules in place to determine who gets what message at the right time. For example, in Gabe’s system, everyone can see a different giving array on the donation page. By using connecting technologies and data analytics the experience can be different for each person.
Using Data to Find More Information and Donors.
Donation statistics can be collected to find more information about donors. The data used in the system can be used to start bringing in third-party data sources such as publicly available wealth data. Real Estate goes hand and hand when it comes to wealth data. This data can tell someone the person’s net worth, giving capacity, and gifts made in the past.
Geolocation data can also be used to pull in more donors. This can be used to see how people are connected through geolocation and social media. The combination of finding more donors and information about those donors can be used to make up the system that makes use of all this data.
How Organizations Change When Using Nonprofit CRM
The first benefit of using nonprofit CRMS is that it gives visibility to the team which can be very helpful in the long run. Secondly, it allows organizations to take action ways easier, such as hosting events or even something simple like sending emails to donors. More insights are given that you can actually act on.
The CRM system allows a business to be successful because it allows a person to easily pick up where someone else left off. A system in place ensures the longevity of the nonprofit organization. Another thing a nonprofit CRM can do is retain donors better. It allows you to reach out more often in a more personal way to keep them along longer.
The most important thing is integrating with marketing tools. For example, you want a CRM that does email, direct mail, and SMS so everything stays connected. You can specifically use one method to connect a group of donors. It is also easier to train someone instead of doing everything by yourself.
Future of CRM
It is evolving from being just a database to being an engagement system that responds in real-time to donors. It is beginning to automate engagement and using AI for nonprofits to follow up the right action at the right time. Nonprofit CRM is starting to incorporate data to drive engagement at scale. The system is constantly innovating as time goes on but Gabe expects this to be the trajectory of CRM in general. Nonprofits are getting creative with the way they build relationships with donors.
CRM Growth During Pandemic
During the last twelve months, the number of nonprofits that started using CRM systems has increased dramatically. Not all nonprofits benefited during the pandemic one of them for example being nonprofit in the arts. As the world changed there was definitely more innovation with how nonprofits ran the company.
There was generosity with people during the pandemic so there was a lot of growth in giving during a very difficult time period. University, healthcare, human services, faith-based, and animal nonprofits were all dependent on CRMS. Their needs are very similar and their innovation is also noticeable when they are using CRMS.
What You Need in a CRM System
One of the main focuses is how to retain a donor for a long period of time which really helps the nonprofit financially. If someone were to donate for the first time they would get the new donor experience. They would get a phone call, emails, and a postcard for donating for the first time. Even small nonprofits have incorporated that into their organization to try to get donors to stay with them for a long time.
There is a noticeable difference when using nonprofit CRM. According to Gabe, There is a 12% improvement in donor retention and about a 10% improvement in average gifts for his nonprofit organization. Moving to technologies is more than a place to store data, it is more efficient for connecting with donors around the country.
Even though the fundraising software is important, you need a platform, playbook, and people for a CRM system. Playbook meaning knowing what the best practices are strategic to be successful. Of course, you need people, someone at the company to help you and the company out. The full benefit can be reached if you have all three for a nonprofit CRM.
About the Guest, Gabe Cooper from Virtuous
Bio: Gabe Cooper is the founder and CEO of Virtuous, a technology company committed to helping nonprofits grow generosity. Much more than a nonprofit CRM, Virtuous is a suite of responsive fundraising platforms designed to help nonprofit teams build better supporter relationships and increase impact with confidence. Previously, Gabe was in leadership at a large nonprofit and co-founded an innovation consultancy. His drive stems from a passion to create market-defining software and help charities reimagine generosity. He frequently writes and speaks about empowering nonprofits to grow generosity through technology.
About The Host Stephen Halasnik, Financing Solutions
Stephen Halasnik is the host of the popular, The Nonprofit MBA Podcast. The Nonprofit MBA podcast’s purpose is to help nonprofit leaders. Mr. Halasnik is the Co-founder and Managing Partner of Financing Solutions. Financing Solutions is a leading provider of Lines of Credit to nonprofits and small businesses.
Mr. Halasnik is a graduate of Rutgers University and has an Executive Masters from the MIT Birthing of Giants Entrepreneurship program. Mr. Halasnik is a best-selling Amazon author and is considered a leading authority on building great, purpose-driven businesses. Mr. Halasnik lives in New Jersey with his best friend, his wife Gina. Mr. Halasnik’s number one purpose is raising his two boys, Michael and Maxwell, to be good men.
About Financing Solutions Nonprofit Line of Credit
Financing Solution’s nonprofit financing product is a great alternative to a traditional bank line of credit because it costs nothing to set up, nothing until used, and when used, is inexpensive. The credit line requires no collateral and no personal guarantees.
Please feel free to fill out the no-obligation, 2-minute nonprofit line of credit application here. The time to set up a credit line is when you don’t need it so that it is ready to be used, just in case.
Note: Financing Solutions donates 10% of its profits to various nonprofit charities