Sage Nonprofit Solutions. Marketing Report 2012

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1 Sage Nonprofit Solutions Marketing Report 2012

2 In December 2011, an was sent to nonprofit development leaders inviting them to take an online survey designed to discover how nonprofits are using to improve their fundraising and outreach activities. The topics covered include: Top marketing objectives and measurable goals. Most significant challenges and main barriers to overcoming them. Tracking, analyzing, and reporting of metrics. Tactics for improving list growth, deliverability, and engagement. Testing and optimization methodology for campaign elements. Types of campaigns promoted by . Key Findings Nearly half of the surveyed respondents (45%) indicated that their organization did not conduct any marketing. Top marketing objectives were: keeping supporters informed (80%), attracting and retaining donors (64%), and driving online donations (61%). A large percentage of respondents (91%) indicated that they have measurable goals in place. Respondents reported that their most significant marketing challenges were growing and retaining contacts as well as integrating with other systems and tactics. By far, the main barriers to overcoming marketing challenges were inadequate resources and expertise (71%). The unsubscribe rate was surprisingly high, averaging 4% against an industry standard of <1%. Although most organizations (83%) responded that they actively work to grow w retain contacts, 74% indicated that their list was growing at a slow pace over the past 12 months. Over three-quarters of the organizations (76%) track click-through rates; other performance metrics tracked were open rates (73%) and total contacts (69%). The top tactics for growing the list were website registration (62%), newsletter registration (60%), and to a friend (55%). Events (galas, auctions) and year-end campaigns were selected as the top campaigns/ appeals that respondents promote by . A large number of organizations are taking measures to improve deliverability by removing hard bounces (49%), followed by regular data cleansing (44%) and removing inactive contacts (38%). Over half the respondents selected subject line as one of the top campaign elements they test and optimize. 43% of respondents indicated that they evaluate performance once a month. 2

3 1. Does your organization conduct marketing? No 55% Yes Yes No 45% 2. What are your organization s top three marketing objectives? Keep supporters informed 80% Attract and retain donors Drive online donations 61% 64% Engage advocates 31% Increase membership 26% Enlist volunteers Have not defined our objectives 1% 12% 12% Attend fundraising events Advertise events and programs Online sales Reach clients who have been successful to keep them coming back for more programs Increase program participation Sell tickets Introduce new philanthropic programs Sell trainings and educational materials Increase enrollment Sales Expand internship sites Enrollment In-kind donations Sell event tickets Drive the Gate 3

4 3. What are your organization s top three measureable goals for marketing? Growing and retaining contacts Delivering relevant content 48% 53% Increasing percentage of active contacts Integrating with donor database, online fundraising, and other systems Integrating with other on- and offline tactics (such as social media, blogs, events) Increasing campaign ROI Segmentation of database Improving deliverability Have not established measured goals Increase contact profile completeness Improve database hygiene 4% 2% 12% 10% 9% 9% 37% 32% 30% 29% Increase open percentage Open rate and link click-throughs 4. What are your organization s three most significant challenges with regard to marketing? Growing and retaining contacts Integrating with donor database, online fundraising, and other systems Integrating with other on- and offline tactics (such as social media, blogs, events) 38% 38% 38% Increasing percentage of active contacts Increasing campaign ROI Delivering relevant content Improving deliverability Segmentation of database Improve database hygiene Increase contact profile completeness 30% 29% 28% 26% 21% 17% 13% None 2% 2% Getting them to convert to donors Time and people to maintain consistency of content and deliverability 4

5 5. What are the main barriers to overcoming your organization s most significant marketing challenges? Inadequate resources/expertise Difficulty integrating data with other data systems Lack of clearly defined objectives Unclear or constantly changing objectives Difficulty integrating marketing with other tactics Goals are not measurable Lack of buy-in from senior management 26% 25% 24% 17% 16% 42% 71% 8% None 5% Bandwidth, in other words not enough time in staff s work programs Lack of total control of appeals Nonprofits are unwilling to look at employing methodologies where donor can attain philanthropic goals with no out-of-pocket costs and still get a tax deduction for the amount donated Other priorities Our website needs to be revamped so we don t always want to send them there but in order to convert to online donors they have to go there Small ROI Understanding how e-marketing can work for bringing in donations 6. Are you involved with tracking, analyzing, and reporting of metrics? 45% Yes No 55% 7. Does your organization benchmark performance? 46% Yes No 54% 5

6 8. What performance metrics does your organization track? Click-through rate Open rate Total contacts 69% 73% 76% Unsubscribe rate Bounceback rate Total new contacts Total s sent 49% 54% 52% 61% Conversion rate 35% Percentage active able contacts 28% Campaign ROI 20% Contact profile completeness Don t know Sender score 7% 7% 3% 1% Action rate 9. What is your unsubscribe rate? Average: 4% 10. Does your organization actively work to grow and retain contacts? 83% Yes No 17% 6

7 11. Which statement best describes your organization s list growth trend for the past 12 months? Increasing slowly Remaining flat 15% 74% Increasing rapidly 6% Don t know Decreasing slowly 3% 2% 12. What tactics do you use to grow your list? Website registration Newsletter registration to a friend Social media sharing icons Facebook registration page Direct mail 62% 60% 55% 54% 52% 48% 17% Blog registration 11% Event and program attendance Event registration and ask for address on all donation envelopes Events, raffles Event sign-ups List rental Partnerships (banners on partner websites) Periodic contact Petitions Phonathon Telemarketing Volunteer registration 7

8 13. What tactics do you use to improve deliverability? Remove hard bounces Regular data cleansing 44% 49% Remove inactive contacts 38% Evaluate soft balances Reactivation campaigns 20% 33% None Monitor inbox placement 2% 10% 10% Testing 14. What tactics do you use to improve the relevance of s to drive engagement? 19% Automated, trigger-based s 3% 21% None 51% Integration with offline tactics 24% Allow subscribers to select communications they want to receive through a preference center 41% Personalization 33% Segment campaigns based on attributes and behavior 33% Video Contests and surveys 8

9 15. What marketing campaign elements does your organization test and optimize on a regular basis? Subject line Day/time sent Content Layout, images Donation form 49% 46% 44% 41% 39% Call to action Personalization 31% 30% Target audience None From line 18% 23% 23% 2% Sales click-through 16. About how frequently does your organization evaluate performance? Daily Weekly 4% 7% Monthly 43% Quarterly 21% Semiannually 16% Annually 9% 9

10 17. What types of campaigns/appeals do you promote by ? Events (galas, auctions) Year-end campaigns 72% 81% Special project appeals Giving challenges Advocacy Volunteer 42% 37% 36% 34% Capital campaigns Membership drives Emergency appeals 21% 25% 24% Pledge drives 14% 12% Races 8% None Money bombs 1% 1% Activities/programs Annual campaign Annual fund Annual fund appeals Course start dates Education, elections General news Holidays Marketing for our attractions Membership activities Newsletters Promotions Single ticket sales Stories of impact Thank you supporter Ticket sales Training announcements, curricula sales Update reports 18. What systems are integrated with your organization s marketing system? Donor database 59% Online fundraising 51% Social media Web analytics 39% 43% None 20% 3% Membership/sales database 10

11 19. How satisfied are you with your service provider? 8% Dissatisfied 1% Very dissatisfied 21% Very satisfied 28% Neutral 42% Satisfied 20. What is the size of your database? Less than 1,000 13% 1,000 4,999 26% 5,000 9,999 10,000 24,999 14% 18% 25,000 49,999 6% 50,000 99, ,000 plus 9% 13% 11

12 21. Which one of the following categories best describes your organization? 1% United Way 2% Community Development/Organizer 2% Education (Other) 1% Foundation 1% Animal Welfare 1% Library 3% Advocacy 3% Membership 3% Faith-Based 3% International 23% Human and Social Services 3% Science 5% Museum/Zoo 5% Environmental and Conservation 10% Health and Hospitals 6% Education (K 12) 10% Education (Higher) 8% 9% Arts, Culture and Humanities Child and family treatment Donor program development Good government Housing Jewish federation Microcredit Multi faceted health, human, and social service base Public interest law Seminary Veteran service YMCA 22. What is your job function/title? Development Director/Manager 34% Executive Management (C-Level) 21% Finance Director/Manager Development 13% 11% 11% Program Director/Manager Accounting/Finance IT Volunteer 5% 3% 1% 1% Associate Director, Research Board/ed equivalent/ communications, development and program manager Board Chair Board Member Communications Manager Consultant Marketing Officer Grants Manager Internet Marketing Manager Marketing Marketing and Communications Director Marketing Coordinator Marketing Director Membership Prospect Researcher Public Relations VP, External Affairs VP, Finance and Admin 12

13 About Sage Nonprofit Solutions Sage has been serving nonprofit and governmental organizations throughout North America for more than 30 years. The company currently helps more than 32,000 unique not-for-profit organizations increase efficiency and more easily manage their operations through the use of technology. From fund accounting, donor and fundraising management, and fixed asset management, to online donation processing, human resources (HR), payroll, and health care, Sage offers a software product or service to meet the organization s need. For more information, call or visit Follow Sage Nonprofit Solutions on Twitter and Facebook. Sage Nonprofit Solutions I Research Blvd. I Building IV, Suite 350 I Austin, TX Sage Software, Inc. All rights reserved. Sage, the Sage logos, and the Sage product and service names mentioned herein are registered trademarks or trademarks of Sage Software, Inc., or its affiliated entities. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners SPK 02/12

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