June 17, 2022  |   5 min read                   

Finally Time to Adopt a CRM

Hi and welcome back to Friday Five. This week is part-1 or a 2-part series on CRMs. Today we are starting with 5 indicators that it’s finally time to adopt a CRM, AkA Customer Relationship Management tool. 

As a growing organization, the daily tasks fighting for your attention leave room for information and time to slip through the cracks. The main objective of a CRM is to improve relationships by recording data and automating actions. By taking time to examine where repetitive and daily tasks can be automated can have immense rewards.

So, without further ado, 5 signs you are ready for a CRM:

1. How Much Software Do You Use?

In the ever increasing world of software, it can be so easy to jump from program to program. Marketing to data and donor management, external to internal communication, and don’t forget reporting. For this reason, it’s important to do a software audit to see which programs you are paying for, which you are using and most importantly, which are providing value. 

You could like one feature or element of a system, but a full audit should also identify any features that are not being used within your current tools. Finding the most used features in current software and consolidating them so data collection is both complete and in one place is the key to efficiency. This can beneficial for both your bottom line as well as streamlining your standard operating procedures for data storage and usage.

Oftentimes, work done in separate systems – systems you likely pay for – can be consolidated to one CRM.   

2. Is Your Information Organized?

Can you name your top 5 donors? What about where to find them and when was the last time someone from your organization contacted them? 

These people are important to your mission and should be treated as such. While this information may eventually be found, having a CRM like DonorNinja which can easily report on donation history, event attendance, email marketing, and more save both time and hassle. 

While these tools do not magically clean your data – we wish too – they do provide a building block to organize and record what is valuable to both you and your industry. Once organized in a CRM tool, these donors can be given statuses based on their activity level. Doubling down on your internal organization can be a helpful way to improve your donor community


3. Same Work, Different Day

Few things are more valuable than your time. How much would it be worth to have an extra hour every day to build and strengthen relationships with your donors, members and volunteers? How great would it be to get a notification when your donors break milestones? Or to get an alert when they were expected to cross a threshold and didn’t?

This is where reflecting on the daily, repetitive tasks can be rewarding: finding where to make templates, scheduling emails and reports, and building automated workflows. Your CRM system will do the work for you and you will get precious time back in your day. Having a built-in notification to trigger actions for you, or your team,  could yield immediate dividends. 

A CRM which allows you to “set it and forget it” does all the work to highlight donors and removes another thing from your to do list. And who doesn’t want that? 

4. Moving In Place...

Can’t get over that hump? 

Whether it be fundraising or donor retention, sometimes it is purely a matter of capacity. A relationship requires maintenance. Maintenance takes time and you probably don’t have enough of that. 

When all of your focus goes to acquiring new relationship, those old relationship usually suffer When you and your team can no longer keep up as your organization scales up, it is time to find a tool to help! Look for a CRM to alleviate routine tasks, giving you more time to connect with your donors, new and old. 

5. Real Life Feedback

How do you show all the amazing you do with both your board and the donors themselves? Dashboards are great for showing what your organization is doing and the impact of your work in a snapshot. This is perfect for a quick, high-level view, but this does not paint the full picture. 

To go deeper, a robust reporting feature is needed. Preferably one that can highlight donor retention, major donors, campaigns and key events. These can be compiled and used to determine which campaigns and fundraising cycles worked the best and which left room for improvement. Use all your resources, including your valuable donor data to give you every possible angle to be successful.  

We hope that you enjoyed our tips.  If you had a favorite or any others we would love to see your thoughts!

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About Us

DonorNinja is a software tool focused on streamlining donor and constituent management for nonprofits of all sizes. Our easy-to-use, unified platform allows nonprofit partners to manage fundraising, marketing, reporting and events in one place, affordably.

We believe strongly in relationships, so our team is partner focused, always striving to provide the best experience possible. We know the work your organization does matters and our system frees time so you can better focus on your amazing work!


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