The July 2021 issue of AFP’s Advancing Philanthropy magazine contained three fabulous articles highlighting the use of data: “Fundraising Trends in 2020” by Tim Sarrantonio of Neon One, “Informing Decisions Through Data” by Bill Ballas, M.S., CFRE and “Streamlining Operations with a Basic Dashboard” by Karen Paul, CFRE of Science Museum Oklahoma. None mention, but all three imply the importance of investing in and maintaining your CRM.
As a fundraiser, next to your donors, data is your lifeblood. It tells you who is giving, how your staff is interacting with donors and what is in the pipeline. It tells you who has a pledge payment due, and who has an important birthday coming up. You spend more time than you want looking at records and creating reports, when you’d prefer to be meeting with donors. But how that data is maintained can make or break your fundraising efforts.
There is no better way to support your mission than investing in a knowledgeable Database Manager. They are the base of your team. The work Database Managers do to clean, maintain, update, and manipulate your data influences every decision you make. From budgeting to projecting to planning for a campaign, nothing is more important than being confident that you have the right numbers.
Here at WIST Data Solutions we sometimes sound like a broken record, but we see it again and again. Database Managers and fundraisers are struggling with their CRM. Start with the basics, cleaning and training, and build from there. Your investment will be worth it.