Is your Donor Database a Goldmine?

There is so much data sitting right in front of your eyes.  If you work for a non-profit, you probably look at your donor database many times a day, or maybe not.  Maybe you have come to love your excel spreadsheet more and more because your database has let you down.

The database of every non-profit should store information, a lot of information.  Yes, you need the name and address of your constituents, but you also need more.  You need to know gift information – how much, when, in response to what?  You need to understand how your donors are engaged with your organization, what are they doing with you?  Knowing this helps you craft your communication strategy in a way that is engaging and meaningful.

Does your database tell you your donor has recently given a gift, attended an event, or volunteered for you?  If yes, is it actionable, meaning can you readily know and do something about it?  If not, you may want to take a look at your database.  Looking at these influential times when a donor engages with your organization helps you to know where they are in their relationship with you.   This, in turn, enables you to craft your communication strategy to ascertain when and what you should be reaching out to them about.

Based on AFP principals, StratusLIVE 365 chose the various types of engagement activities below to track and actively tally how engaged your constituent is, or is not, as the case may be.

Engagement Activities that are tracked:

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When using this method, scoring is involved, so activities that are more important to your organization are scored (weighted) higher than those that may not be as important to you.  There are even those activities that do not apply at all, and that is OK, you can just ignore those.  However, what you cannot overlook is the score that results on each constituent record.  Analyzing these scores will provide you with the knowledge to make concrete marketing decisions.  And when you can make concrete marketing decisions, results happen.

Results are good because then you are on a path, a path you can analyze, monitor, tweak.  For example, you can see when a constituent volunteers for your organization but does not donate to it. Or maybe they attended an event specializing in some facet of your mission that you can now talk in greater depth to them about. Knowing is everything – and with that knowledge, you can act accordingly and advance your mission.

Moreover, as you learn to read these activities and the related scores of your constituents, you begin to see your database as a new source of prospects.  You begin to know what one score means versus another.  That feels good.

You probably do have a goldmine in your database.  Now you just need to tap into it and make it shine.

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