Data Transparency: Are You a Frog in Hot Water?
For obvious reasons we’re treading into dangerous waters with a public accustomed to a far different level of brand engagement. Take the coveted snowbirder, that deep-pocketed donor with the wherewithal not simply to flee colder winter climes, but also to donate to national nonprofits and chapters alike. Except that because the chapter and national offices refuse to share that supporter’s data, he’s treated like a stranger by the very same organization to which he recently donated $50,000. We're talking dead frog here. Smaller and far more common examples of this occur countless times a day across the nonprofit industry.
Fortunately, with a few changes that frog not only can be saved but turned into a prince (or at least princely treatment of your supporters). For comparison purposes, it’s worth noting that the commercial brands that have transitioned from channel-centric to customer-centric marketing are going gangbusters. Why? Because they have a wealth of information about each customer that is shared across channels, meaning they can continually refine and improve upon the treatment of that customer—the content, the offers, the asks—with a strong (data-driven) idea of his/her response. Meanwhile, marketers and other stakeholders can work more strategically to nurture and expand that customer relationship in ways that benefit the entire organization.
So how does the nonprofit industry transition to this same supporter-friendly model of operations?
- Face the fear and forge a top-down commitment to gradually transition toward customer-centric policies
- Tear down operating silos and institute policies embracing data transparency
- Put in place new forms of employee recognition and reward that value enterprise-wide results as a product of multichannel efforts
- Implement centralized data warehouses that integrate supporter data as a single organizational asset
Happily, this is not an issue of technology. Many, if not most, of today’s major nonprofit data management systems are capable of embracing a supporter-centric operating model. The key is to develop the will to do it. The alternative is to find yourself in hotter water.
This post originally appeared here. It was reprinted with the author's permission.
Vice President, Strategy & Development
Eleventy Marketing Group
Angie is ridiculously passionate about EVERYTHING she’s involved in — including the future and success of our nonprofit industry.
Angie is a senior exec with 25 years of experience in direct and relationship marketing. She is a C-suite consultant with experience over the years at both nonprofits and agencies. She currently leads strategy and development for marketing intelligence agency Eleventy Marketing Group. Previously she has worked at the innovative startup DonorVoice and as general manager of Merkle’s Nonprofit Group, as well as serving as that firm’s CRM officer charged with driving change within the industry. She also spent more 14 years leading the marketing, fundraising and CRM areas for two nationwide charities, The Arthritis Foundation and the American Cancer Society. Angie is a thought leader in the industry and is frequent speaker at events, and author of articles and whitepapers on the nonprofit industry. She also has received recognition for innovation and influence over the years.