By: Katy Spencer
There is no time like the present to clean up your data.
Donor data is a tool that helps you understand your supporters in order to build powerful strategies and impactful messaging to drive your fundraising plans. Making data hygiene a priority is vital for fundraising success. In light of the new year and fresh starts, we’ve put together this list of reasons why now is the time to get serious about your donor data:
1) Messy In, Messy Out
Set criteria internally for data entry. Standardized and clean data is more usable and will result in better fundraising ROI. Examples include a consistent field entry process for constituents and gifts or formatting addresses to postal requirements.
2) Leverage Your Year-end Campaign Data
Here are a few best practices we recommend for optimizing your data from your year-end campaign:
• Contact the mail house that helped with your direct mail piece and ask for the National Change of Address (NCOA) report! This is an easy way to get updated addresses directly from the Postal Service.
• Analyze your digital campaigns. How was your response rate? This is an opportunity to better segment your list.
• Consider adding an email append to get fresh data if your open rate was low.
3) Commit to Retention
As we all know, it is cheaper to retain a donor than it is to acquire a new one, but you need to have good data in order to do that. Clean data will allow you to optimize segmentation, automate digital communication or personalize appeals. Focus on the new donors you just acquired and make it a goal to retain them through 2021 with good stewardship through newsletters or welcome series to get to know each other better.
4) Get Personal
Make sure your First Name or Salutation field is filled in and correct! You can also utilize custom fields to tag records based on interests, connection to the cause, or programs that are significant to the donor. Custom fields can be queried to be included or excluded in mass appeals. The less “anonymous” the donor feels, the better results you will have.
5) Don’t Get Overwhelmed
Cleaning up your donor data can seem like a daunting task as you look at the database you have inherited. Our team here at Doing Good Digital can help guide you through standard data entry procedures, data hygiene best practices and integration between your email list and CRM.
Does your nonprofit use Raiser’s Edge? Book a complimentary 30-minute consult with our professional certified expert before January 31st. Tell us your pain points and we can help put together a game plan to make the most of your donor data in 2021 and help you reach your fundraising goals.