The first website goal is geared towards cost reduction while the latter is geared towards revenue generation. To achieve the latter aim, charities need to provide their supporters with a unique and unequalled web experience that will maximise the opportunities from every point of contact. Ultimately, this will help charities meet their strategic goals.
For example, charities can tailor-make the greeting messages based on supporter information held in its databases, and enable supporters to make donations, create or renew a subscription and even shop for products online. This would give many charities a big push in their marketing and fundraising activities.
Yet according to the IT survey, only 33 percent of charity websites currently accept donations, 24 percent offer fundraising functionality and only 11 percent allow member subscriptions. The charity that rises to this challenge and establishes itself as the leader in this area has much to gain. Again, integration is the key.
Promoting long-term growth
The third challenge is for charities to provide long-term, sustainable growth in the sector. For a charity, the two things that can provide this growth are the organisation’s values and its relationship with supporters.
However, the value of supporter relationship is in general badly measured and managed by charities. According to the Institute of Fundraising, "campaigns often fail because charities don’t understand their supporters very well". The institute believes charities are generally bad at doing market research on what their supporters are like and what campaign would therefore work well with them.
Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) is a long-established marketing metric that can be used by charities to acquire and cultivate long-term supporter relationships to generate the growth that they need.
How can SRM solutions contribute to this? Good SRM solutions will enable charities to gather data and analyse them for supporter profiling and strategy planning. Any supporter transactions, history and preferences are integrated from various data sources for analysis purposes.
Once these data are analysed, future trends in the supporter behaviour can be predicted to maximise cross-sell or up-sell opportunities. The analysed data also allows charities to identify potential high donors or follow up on a newsletter or email sent to supporters.
According to the Charity Commission, another area in which charities are missing out is the estimated millions they could claim on tax breaks if they were to maximise the use of tax-deductible donations, such as Gift Aid, Payroll Giving and Share Giving. A well-designed, integrated SRM will help charities make huge leaps in this direction.
To summarise, charities must be able to integrate multiple communication channels and data sources to provide a single view of supporters and a better web experience for their donors. With a better understanding of their supporters, charities can start using their emarketing and telephony communication channels (assuming they are integrated) to conduct more relevant and effective communications to their supporters.
Integration to a SRM solution is the key to all of these.
Dr Samuel Chong amd Giles Hutchins, Atos Origin