One of the tools most absent from the non-profit landscape is surprisingly a CRM, or in their case, a Donor Relationship Manager. Most smaller non-profits, as one would expect, work with Excel, or a multitude of Excel spreadsheets. Why? Because, silly, it comes for free! And don’t you know that free is better?
Well, as you know, I’ve already discussed how I feel about a spreadsheet versus a CRM. And I’m not quite done on the subject, either. But let’s look at using a CRM through the lens of a non-profit organization.
Non-Profit CRMs for Fun and Profit
A non-profit is simply a company that makes money for the purpose of charitable work. Therefore, non-profit is really a misnomer. A non-profit can’t issue dividends to shareholders, and must follow a few other rules that are meant to track the money so everything is above board. And while customers are ‘donors’ and a sale is a ‘donation’ the basic business rules still apply. Therefore, the same marketing rules apply as well. Tracking donors, what their donation patterns are, contact information and so on is just as relevant to a for-profit business.
Non-Profit Donor Tracking and Management
Keeping track of your donors is the key to your organizational success. It is really hard to put everything in an index card holder or three-ring binder; you may forget to label the section or the documents may be lost. Spreadsheets become bulky and difficult to manage, and there’s no way to easily automate reports or mailing lists, emphasis on easily. With CRM software, you will be able to easily access donor records, create new campaigns, search for donors who have stopped donating, and create reports to track successes. Good CRM software provides all of these features.
Put the ‘Fun’ in Fundraising
With a CRM, a fundraising campaign is a simple matter of selecting who the most likely donors will be based on their profiles, and targeting those people directly. Your CRM should also dynamically include any new donors that you’ve entered into the system since the last time a similar campaign was run. Automated acknowledgements are the most ridiculously simple marketing tool, and yet it is all but neglected. And by breaking down and personalizing your fundraising campaigns, you increase the likelihood of repeat donations.
Communicating with your donors is essential and hopefully rewarding. Giving them regular updates with the minimum effort gets your donors more involved. With a CRM, you can create newsletters and email campaigns, schedule messages, choose different templates, and even organize your sent messages and newsletters so that you can track your communications with donors.
There are so many advantages of using a CRM software for your non-profit organization as well as for fundraising, but the biggest advantage of adapting a CRM system is that it has no disadvantages; everything is automated within this powerful technology. The main reason to use a CRM is to make your non-profit organization with more creative and efficient. It is the best fundraising software which can help you manage a lot of aspects of your organization.