The recently published Rogare Report devoted an entire section to How data, technology and social media are affecting fundraising.
The Agitator has a brief summary of the report here - April Fools’ Day 2019: Time to Get Serious
The introduction pretty much says it all:
T. Clay Buck, MFA, CFRE
"In a 2014 study of 142 fundraisers, 80 per cent indicated a belief that better technology leads to more effective fundraising; however only 33 per cent felt they had the necessary technology to raise more funds (Bluemner 2014). As in all industries, the technological tools available to fundraisers now are myriad and offer solutions to nearly every aspect of fund development. However many nonprofits cannot afford or do not have the expertise or knowledge to implement tools that would drastically increase their fundraising results. Many practitioners may not even know that the resources exist."
We summarize the remainder of the section as follows:
- There is a definite over-proliferation of tools/CRMs that most organizations regard as fire-and-forget solutions, meaning that simply implementing them and turning them on is enough
- Most of the tools/CRMs in use to not provide intelligence into how the organization is performing standalone, and/or how it is performing against its peers
- None of the tools/CRMs in use were designed with a data-first architecture, meaning that all attempts to preserve data quality and perform analysis and data hygiene have to be done manually
- None of the tools/CRMs in use have a true multi-channel solution. Simply storing a mailing address, phone number, email address, and a social handle is not a considerable competency,
We thought we'd share their recommendations and provide a post (coming) on each as it relates to your TrueGivers experience:
- The primary recommendation that can be made is that fundraisers, first and foremost, do need to invest multichannel comprehensive communications. Standard mail, email and phone are no longer viable stand-alone methodologies and donors of all generations are using multiple platforms for all their communications.
- Second, fundraisers must have a rudimentary understanding of data analysis and hygiene, as well as a modicum of technological knowledge to manage both standard communications and newer methodologies. Data quality can have the single largest impact on revenue; as data ages or becomes incorrect, fundraisers lose donors through the inability to contact them or contact them correctly.
- Third, as part of a comprehensive, strategic fundraising plan, fundraisers must include the strategies and platforms that make sense in the context of their organization, and plans and that they can manage well and efficiently. The tendency to chase after the newest technology or platform should be tempered against the overall plan for the organization and what can be managed and managed well.