Three Data & Tech Updates that I'm Proud of
Updated: Aug 3, 2021
It's been over a month since I've published a blog post, so I wanted to walk you through three recent innovations we've made at Tissot Solutions.
Tracking off-year vs. on-year contributions:
I'm obsessed with knowing WHEN donors give, HOW donors gives, HOW MUCH donors give, and what SOLICITATION MEDIUM caused the donor to give.
These are all crucial data points that help us make better solicitations as fundraisers and make sure that we make more effective asks to the right people.
Recently, we've broken down donations in our donor database between the on-year and the off-year. Here's a screenshot of what that looks like:
Previously, we've had our clients solicit donors without any major consideration to WHEN those donors have previously made their contributions. A donor who only makes contributions in the few months leading up to an election is unlikely to give in the off-year unless a candidate has a direct relationship with them.
With this data point, we will exclude donors who only give in the on-year from being cold-solicited by our clients in the off-year. Instead, we will have our clients either focus on soliciting prior donors (whom they have a relationship with) or spend their time building new relationships with prospective donors who do give in the off-year.
Now, this isn't a perfect filter. A good number of donors haven't been included in call time before and therefore haven't been engaged in the off-year. That's why there's a distinction to be made between donors that haven't been asked to give in the off-year before versus donors that refuse to make early contributions.
Shoutout to Noah Maier (https://www.maieranderson.com/), who brought this to my attention.
We recently started using OpenPhone for two strong use cases: a central business line that clients can send checks, action items, and reminder asks via text, and a line we can send quick pledge texts out from. More use cases are coming, but for now, let's break down both of these.
We often have clients send us important text messages that include (but are not limited to) the following:
Photos of checks to add to their databases
Business cards to add to their email list & database
Asks for reminders
People to include in the next call time session
One issue I've had with this is that there is no way to affirmatively track or neatly assign text messages as a new task to a team member. Instead, I've had to personally manage all of these text messages and the workflows associated with them.
With OpenPhone, we now have all of our clients text these items to our central business line. With OpenPhone's integration with Zapier, we've set up a Zap that will automatically create a new Asana task for every client text message that comes in. Here's what that looks like:
Every time a text message is sent to our OpenPhone number, this Zap is triggered. It filters out texts to make sure they belong to a client, and then the third step matches the client's name to their phone number. The fourth step creates a new task in our project management app Asana, assigns it to a team member, and sets a due date.
Now, we've never missed a client text message before, but with this new Zap, we've streamlined the workflows associated with each text. This will make sure that we will never miss anything sent to us, and as a Manager, it helps make sure that every text is properly delegated & taken care of.
If you are a previous reader of this blog, you'll know that I'm professionally infatuated with Airtable (sign up here: https://airtable.com/invite/r/nCqZhSYk).
We've built out our central donor database on this app and have even created a custom CRM for our clients that replaces NGP (read more here).
With OpenPhone (and Zapier), we now have a way to send text messages directly from Airtable. Anytime a client gets a pledge from a donor during call time, all we have to do is click a button, and that donor will be texted the link to donate along with where to send a check.
This text message is triggered with one click.
Just by clicking on the thumbs up in the "Pledge Text" column, a Zap will be triggered, which will take data from Airtable (cell phone, name of the donor) and send them a text via OpenPhone (You'll note that we also have one-click email templates in place and can send those out via Airtable automations).
This new feature ensures that donors promptly get information about how to make their donation. It also saves our clients time from having to copy & paste the donation URL into a text. Instead, we send this out with one click and then move on to the next call.
You can signup for Openphone here: https://openph.one/referral/6tjT0JS
These three changes will help us prepare better calls & solicitations for our clients, ensure that we stay on top of all of our client communications, and will help donors get immediate information about how to make a donation.