The Right Nonprofit CRM: Your First Step to Personalization

Mckenna Bailey June 04, 2019, by Mckenna Bailey

The Nonprofit CRM: Explained! Register for webinar, today! Connecting with your donor base is an essential part of all your fundraising efforts. Because giving is such a personal decision, donors need to know that their generosity is more than a simple transaction for you and your nonprofit. They need a personalized experience of your nonprofit that proves how valuable they are.

It’s easy to create a personal experience with a handful of donors when your nonprofit is small. But as your organization gets bigger (and busier), you need to plan for how you might scale those relationships. How do you cater to each donor without creating unmanageable amounts of work for your team?

You invest in a nonprofit crm.

What to Look for in The Right Nonprofit CRM

A nonprofit crm is any tool that allows you to organize your donor relationships. At the very least, it’s a tool that keeps a record of key information about your individual donors. But the right nonprofit CRM will do much more. The right nonprofit CRM will inform the way you engage with your donors. It will tell you exactly when to reach out and what to say. It will help you create that valuable personalized experience so that you maintain relationships with everyone in your donor base.

The easiest way to know whether the nonprofit CRM you’re considering is the right one for your organization, ask yourself:

  • Does it have flexible account types to consider all of my donor base?
  • Can it monitor “Give Asks” and provide powerful reports?
  • Can it segment your donor base by interests and other personal information?
  • Does it allow you to easily search information?
  • Can it create and monitor campaigns?

There are more features and information to consider, but these should be nonnegotiable if you are trying to use the level of personalization your donors expect.

How A Nonprofit CRM Makes Personalization Easy

It can be difficult to get everyone on your team excited about making a huge investment into a new CRM. It takes time and money to transition out of your current system into a new one. But what you’re gaining is an efficient, powerful tool that will help you scale personalized donor relationships at each stage of your growth. Here’s how a nonprofit CRM can immediately help with personalization.

All Your Data in One Place

A common reason nonprofits find personalization difficult is because it takes too much time. Often, you are working with programs that don’t integrate with each other. Pulling reports could take a few hours and a couple departments. It’s not a sustainable use of time.

With the right CRM, all your important data will be in a single place, ready to mine for insights and ideas. Not only will the process be faster, but you’ll be able to see the results in real time for faster learning.

More Context For Your Data

To execute the kind of powerful personalization tactics your donors expect, you have to include as much context as possible. For example, maybe someone in your donor base gives during natural disasters. You want to reach out to them during the most recent flooding, but don’t realize they live in the area that’s flooding.

It’s an easy mistake when you’re managing donors manually. But a nonprofit CRM will give you a complete picture of your donors so you can make the right asks (and send personalized communications) at the right time.

Efficient Data Management

Over time, your donors will experience major life events. They’ll move, retire, get promoted and build their network of friends and family. All of these changes are important for you to know if you want to provide a powerful personalized experience. But unless you have a nonprofit CRM designed to instantly update all your records, across all your tools, it’s very difficult to keep your records current. Make sure that you can trust your data and invest in a tool that can update in real time so that every communication with your donor is as accurate as possible.

How to Choose the Right Nonprofit CRM for Your Organization

Learn more about how a nonprofit CRM can serve your organization and how to find the right one for you at our webinar. Hosted by Elevation on June 5, David Cady will talk about how CRMs have changed fundraising in the last 20 years, where they are heading and how they can help you leverage personalization for increased generosity. Reserve your spot today!

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Mckenna Bailey

Mckenna Bailey

Mckenna Bailey is a writer at Virtuous, doing her part to make empathy and generosity cool.

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