Posts

We are excited about our new partnership with Qgiv! From donation forms to event registration to auctions and more, Qgiv provides diverse software offerings for your everyday fundraising needs as well as add-on features that integrate seamlessly for a big event like a gala or golf tournament.

Jack Nelson, Director of Business Development
Qgiv

This diverse feature offering and scalable pricing truly sets Qgiv apart. We know our nonprofit clients of any size can benefit from this digital fundraising platform.

Recently, I had the opportunity to chat with Jack Nelson, Qgiv’s Director of Business Development, and the Qgiv team about the benefits of using Qgiv for a large event. Since I know most nonprofits host large events, I thought I would share these excellent tips and insights with you to help you plan your next successful fundraising event in this Q&A below.


Shannon: How easy is it for Qgiv customers to add a feature when gearing up for a big event like a gala or golf tournament?

Jack: Our intuitive and award-winning platform makes it extremely easy for our customers to add or remove fundraising tools whenever they’d like. For example, a client can enable our Peer-to-Peer plan for just 1 month, so they can set up their peer-to-peer fundraising event registration and offer fundraising pages for individuals or teams. This goes for all our event solutions including traditional events, peer-to-peer and auctions. Within each tool, it’s easy to enable helpful features like early bird discounts and promo codes to encourage registration.

S: What features do you see consistently used for large events? What are some underused features you think nonprofits would really benefit from using for events like galas that have lots of moving parts?

J: Every event is different, so we offer a range of options for our customers so they can choose what is best for them. One popular option is the use of event packages, which are used to define special pricing and follow-up questions specific to each package. For example, you can set up special pricing for a table of 10 and ask additional information specific to that table, such as dinner choice. Some of the most successful events we see have a defined cutoff time for registration, thus showing urgency to their constituents that time is of the essence. Donors typically respond very favorably.

A feature that could really benefit complex events is our Fundraising Hub, which is basically an aggregator for fundraising events and activities. In other words, you can brand one primary event page, add a thermometer with a link to register for a peer-to-peer event, link to view and bid on auction items, and of course links to make an online donation. This Fundraising Hub page can display the total amount raised along with recent activity for the entire campaign.

We also love seeing our clients use the text fundraising feature included within our peer-to-peer platform. Donors can initiate a gift by texting a keyword which will then be credited to either the event, a participant’s personal page, or a team page all based on the keyword.

Last but not least, we always like to stress the importance of communication. The Qgiv platform includes an array of options to communicate with participants and donors. You can schedule communication including push notifications, emails, and/or SMS outbound messaging.

S: How does data collected from big events sync into integrations like Salesforce or Neon One? What about conversion rates from the event being tracked through Google Analytics?

J: With our Data plan, nonprofits can save time and money by utilizing one of our many built-in integrations including Salesforce and Neon One. By doing so, the donor data collected within Qgiv will be synced automatically. Working with our Customer Experience team, all you have to do is define which integration you’d like to use, provide one-time credentials, define any custom mappings which may be applicable, and we take care of the rest. It’s truly just a matter of set it and forget it!

Our clients can take advantage of the tracking capabilities provided by Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, and Facebook Pixel. All they have to do is insert the required code in various areas of their events and forms. Our Customer Experience team is happy to assist them if they need a little extra help.

S: How can partners, like Tackle, help Qgiv customers prepare for a large event?

J: We see our partners assist our clients in many ways based on their specific skill set. We’re extremely excited about our partnership with Tackle, as they have tremendous experience helping nonprofit organizations maximize all their fundraising endeavors. We’re excited to see how Tackle will work alongside each client to help them with their setup, configuration, and any unique needs they have. In addition, partners like Tackle help clients formulate an overall plan including the details before, during, and after fundraising events and campaigns.


If you are planning for your next large event and think Qgiv would be a good fit, our team at Tackle would love to help you implement this diverse platform and get you set up for a successful fundraising event! Contact us today and let’s get started.

This sucks. You weren’t planning for a big CRM switch in 2021, time wise or budget wise. But, c’mon now, you KNOW you’ve been talking about leaving Luminate CRM for years now. The time has arrived and we want to help you make lemonade out of these lemons.

Blackbaud recently announced that Luminate CRM would no longer be supported in 2022. That doesn’t feel like a ton of time to make a CRM switch, but for small- or medium-sized organizations, we are confident that this is very doable in this time frame.

First off, this transition might actually be easier than you expect. For many organizations, transitioning from Luminate CRM to Salesforce Nonprofit Success Pack (NPSP) would be a viable and likely option. There are many similarities to how NPSP operates and it could actually be a generally easy transition for your data and your team.

For smaller organizations, this could be a good opportunity to move to a completely new CRM and other digital systems that might better fit your needs. Especially, because we know most small nonprofits aren’t getting the most out of Luminate CRM anyway.

Now you might be wondering with Luminate CRM going away, will Luminate Online still be around? The short answer is yes, at least for now, it will still be around. However, that does not mean it is necessarily the best option for your organization.

If you are using Luminate Online for online fundraising, peer-to-peer, and/or email marketing (which most Luminate CRM clients probably are), you’re going to need to consider your plans with those tools as well. You will have a very different range of compatible systems and modules available to you regardless of what CRM you transition to. And while switching from Luminate Online isn’t as urgent, it is something to keep in mind as you are making the decision which CRM you want to move to. The best part is that those options are generally big improvements over the equivalent Luminate Online tools.

The good news is CRM and online fundraising platform conversions are waaaay easier now, pretty much across the board, than they were 10 years ago or whenever your organization most likely transitioned to Luminate CRM in the first place. This is even easier if your staff is small and motivated to end up with better systems and processes than Luminate CRM provided.

The bottom line is we want to acknowledge that yes, this is urgent and needs to be dealt with ASAP. But we also want you to know it is totally doable without needing to be hasty or panicked. With some willingness to be flexible and endure some likely pain in the short term, you’re going to end up far better off.

Our team at Tackle is extremely well-suited to help you navigate this change. We have helped many clients transition away from Luminate CRM and are confident we can help you smoothly make this transition to a new CRM.

So don’t let this Luminate CRM news sour your day. Let’s work together and get you set up for success with a new CRM that actually fits your needs and budget. Reach out today and let’s get started!

Our team at Tackle has worked with so many fundraising systems over the years, that it is rare we find one we get so excited about. Fundraise Up is has become this unicorn with our team.

Larry Cardarelli, Partnership Success Manager
Fundraise Up

Fundraise Up is always learning from user data on ways to improve the user experience, and they do this automatically. So not only are they getting people to complete the donation process, their system is constantly working to do things like optimizing donation amounts and upgrading donors to become monthly givers. There is also potentially a ton of actionable data that could be learned and utilized in a CRM.

Plus, their staff is awesome and attentive, and they truly care about nonprofits beyond just trying to make a bunch of money.

I recently had the privilege to connect with Larry Cardarelli, Fundraise Up’s new Partnership Success Manager. Larry comes from the content creation space working with agencies large and small, and we know he will be a great asset to Fundraise Up’s team. We were able to chat a bit about Fundraise Up and platform integrations and trends, and I am excited to share my interview below on this topic with Larry.


Shannon: You mentioned previously that a major initiative for Fundraise Up this year is to develop new integrations with other platforms. What trends contributed to making this a priority?

Larry: Fundraise Up is hyper-focused on the online donation experience—we’re not trying to be a CRM. So to ensure that the greatest number of nonprofits can take advantage of the platform, we’re invested in rapidly deploying new native CRM integrations. Today, we have six such integrations, including API-based solutions for Salesforce and Raiser’s Edge NXT, and most recently, Neon CRM.

S: Are there any unique ways nonprofits are using integrations with Fundraise Up?

L: Yes. One of the key features of our integration suite is custom mapping rules. Mapping rules in Fundraise Up allow a nonprofit to route data to its CRM in an incredibly sophisticated and granular way. This means that tracking campaign, appeal, and fund properties is painless and straightforward, and we can even push UTM tags to the nonprofit’s CRM for enhanced marketing tracking. The practical outcome of our approach to data mapping is that our customers can engage in advanced fundraising. And they know that any data they collect in Fundraise Up (including data from custom properties) can be routed to their CRM.

I’ll also add that through our Zapier integration, the sky’s the limit in terms of what a nonprofit can do with its data. There are great stewardship tools like Thankview that can be connected to Fundraise Up for sending video messages in email, and of course, marketing staples like MailChimp for growing email lists.

S: In addition to integrations, what platform trends is your team seeing recently?

L: Recurring giving is a powerful component of any fundraising strategy, and we’ve seen a lot of demand in the nonprofit sector for better offerings from software vendors. Strategically, we built robust recurring giving functionality into the Fundraise Up platform on day one, and it’s helped nonprofits double their recurring donor acquisition rates and boost overall online donation revenue by 2x. So instead of going back to the drawing board like some vendors will have to do, we’re able to focus on conversion enhancements for our recurring donation features and iterate on components like our one-time to recurring donation upsell tools.

S: How is Fundraise Up solving issues that come up with compatibility integrating your product with other platforms? For example, when a platform like Salesforce makes a change to their API or data structure.

L: This is a really important question because, while native integrations help automate things, they don’t always meet the advanced needs of enterprise nonprofits. To make sure we can service even the most complex data structures, we’ve created a custom export tool that lets a nonprofit have complete control over the data that is pulled from Fundraise Up and how that data is formatted. This is super important because not all CRMs format data the same way, and it can be a frustrating to have to manipulate your data in Excel before uploading it to a CRM. Our custom export tool also features a scheduling feature which lets you export data on a recurring basis. That export can either be emailed to one or more users or uploaded to an FTP location. So with our custom export tool, it doesn’t matter if a platform’s API or data structure changes. A nonprofit can update their export from Fundraise Up to meet the requirements of their CRM.

S: How are partners, like Tackle, stepping in to fill the gap?

L: I mentioned earlier that we’re hyper focused on the online giving experience, but that doesn’t mean we’re not interested in ensuring that customers succeed in other areas. We partner with companies like Tackle to ensure that our customers are fully supported as they scale their fundraising efforts. Since Tackle is really an extension of a nonprofit’s team, they can be relied upon for Help Desk services, best practices-based CRM management and of course, seamless integration of Fundraise Up into the nonprofit’s fundraising tech stack.

Tackle is excited to present our newest service offering, Help Desk!

In a nutshell, Help Desk is perfect for those small or inconsistent CRM and online fundraising projects that pop up from time to time. For a small monthly administrative fee, you’ll gain access to our team of technology experts and only pay for the time we actively spend helping you.

We wanted to provide a service that truly helps nonprofit teams overcome technical roadblocks so they can focus on what is really important—growing your organization.

Our team has been working hard at launching this new program and we know many nonprofits will benefit from this on-call format, especially as we navigate this “new normal” we have found ourselves in.

What sparked the Help Desk idea?

We encounter a lot of organizations that often need occasional technical help, but cannot commit to a large support retainer. Often these nonprofits are on the smaller scale or have some sort of in-house technical support already.

On our side, it is challenging to write proposals for projects that only require a handful of hours. But our team has a passion to help nonprofits, no matter their project size, so we decided it was time to brainstorm a new way to serve these organizations. And thus, Help Desk was born.

With Help Desk, we set up an umbrella agreement that allows us to promptly answer questions and easily scope out work for approval via email. That allows our team to focus less on selling you something and more on helping you quickly. It truly is a win-win for both of us.

What are the top benefits of Help Desk?

Tech Team Access – You have a full CRM and fundraising technology team ready to help you on demand when you need it.

No Retainer Fees – There are no large retainer fees you have to commit to. You will be set up with a small monthly administrative fee to have access to our Help Desk platform and then you will just be billed for the work we do.

Ongoing Relationship – Over time we become very familiar with your systems and needs, so when a major project like a migration comes up, we can often skip a lot of discovery steps. This saves you time and money.

What kind of organizations are the best fit for Help Desk?

We specifically designed this for nonprofits with platforms like Salesforce and Microsoft Dynamics, online marketing software, and/or digital fundraising systems. We serve both smaller organizations without full time technology staff, and larger organizations with technology staff who are too busy to provide front-line user support or need occasional help with larger projects.

Universally, you want to get the most out of your technology and we want to help you achieve that.

What are examples of situations that Help Desk addresses?

Every organization has a unique set of technical or strategic circumstances and struggles. Our team can address them all, from day-to-day issues to long-term technology tactics.

Here are just a few scenarios our team is equipped to handle.

  • Major Platform Change – Our CRM or Online Fundraising platform has an upcoming change (upgrade, release, feature retirement, security warning, etc.). Will our organization be impacted? Or maybe it already happened a while ago, and you’ve been ignoring it. And it DEFINITELY impacted you. How difficult will it be to fix it now?
  • Data Detective WorkHow the heck did THIS person’s information get changed in this way?
  • Input on Technology Strategy – We’re about to launch a new campaign that uses our platforms in a somewhat different way. And we’re also interested in exploring some things in the future in a kinda-related somewhat different way. Is there anything else we should be thinking about here?

We know one of these questions has come up for you in the past. Folks at all levels of an organization have all kinds of good ideas about how to make their jobs easier and better. But without the kind of broad nonprofit tech experience Tackle brings, it can be challenging to know where to begin.

With Help Desk, you can turn to us to help you navigate any technology issues, big or small. We have experience working with all sizes of nonprofits and can help you navigate best practices and talk about red flags we might see down the road.

What does the small monthly fee cover and how many billable hours do you typically spend per client?

The monthly administrative fee covers your team setup in our online help desk system. This includes progress monitoring 24/7 and access to our team.

Help Desk’s pay-as-you-go billing provides you with flexibility to adjust your spending. Every client has different and various technology needs. We will work with you to set up boundaries for pre-approved hours per month, and will communicate with you when you are nearing that boundary. For work that will take longer than those pre-approved hours, we will work with you on getting approval to move forward so you don’t have any surprises. You also have the ability to limit how many people on your team have access to Help Desk so you have control over what is a priority for that month.

How do you sign up?

Great question! We’d love to set up a time to chat with you and take the next steps to getting your team signed up for Help Desk. Simply contact us through the website or send a note to Ryan directly.

Learn more about Help Desk here.

With end-of-year planning in full swing, don’t forget to add data cleaning to your checklist.

You want your technology systems to be in their best shape before your “busy” season begins, so making sure you start putting some processes into play now by practicing good data hygiene so you can guarantee your campaign will run as smoothly as possible.

Jeff Miller, our in-house data management guru, gives three recommendations for maintaining good data hygiene that you can start doing today.

1) Keep addresses up-to-date and in a consistent format.

Make use of address standardization and validation services offered as part of your CRM or online fundraising system, including CASS certification and NCOA address updates.

Consider adding a front-end address validator, like SmartyStreets, to donation forms and other web forms where addresses are collected.

2) Stop ALL bad data at the source.

It’s not just bad/incomplete addresses that can be stopped at the source. Consider all the sources of incoming data—web forms, data entry forms, system integrations, import/exports—and make sure that they’re consistent with each other and capturing the information that’s really needed.

Read more

Do a quick search and you will discover there are plenty of options when it comes to peer-to-peer fundraising platforms. And, at Tackle, we have worked with a lot of them. The good, the okay, and the “this is amazing.”

So far on our journey, these are six of our team’s favorite peer-to-peer systems that are geared toward nonprofits. They all have their pros and cons so we thought we’d share a little bit about why we like each one. These favorites are listed in no particular order.

Classy

In 2011, Classy launched it’s peer-to-peer fundraising service, as well as crowdfunding, events, supporter management, and marketing automation. They were one of the first modern peer-to-peer systems to gain traction. Today, the company is used by over 4,000 nonprofit organizations.

From our experience, Classy is a well-supported platform, both backed in funding and with a solid customer service experience. They take a modern approach to their design, keeping in mind the user experience. It’s intuitive and easy to use and embraced by many well-known nonprofits.

Crowdrise by GoFundMe

Crowdrise was founded in 2010 and was acquired by GoFundMe in 2017. The company takes a “fun” spin on crowdfunding and is widely used by “tens of thousands of charities and events,” according to their website.

Read more

There is a good chance you’ve utilized multi-factor authentication recently. When you sign into a new account and have to receive something like a code via text message to proceed. While it might seem like this extra step is an inconvenience, multi-factor authentication might actually protect you from some serious security inconveniences down the road.

Multi-factor authentication is becoming the industry norm these days, and for good reason. Our team weighs in on why we always recommend this to our clients on all of the digital systems they use.

Significantly increases security.

Generally, when you, or someone, want to sign in to your account your username and password are needed. When you add multi-factor authentication, another special code is required to be able to sign in. This code is usually sent via text message or accessed through an authentication app like Google Authenticator, and needs to be used immediately as it will quickly time out.

Read more

Top 3 Best Practices for a Successful Donation Form | Tackle Nonprofit Technology Consulting

Donation forms are a necessary part of online fundraising. But is your donation form discouraging people from giving online?

Whether you are building a donation form from scratch or utilizing an already built online system to help you, make sure you are setting yourself up for success with these three best practices.

1) Less is more. Make it as simple as possible to fill out.

Have you ever started filling out a form, only to abandon it because it was going to take you way longer than you expected to fill out? Your donors do this too.

If possible, only include the necessary information you need to process your donor’s payment on your donation form. This will depend on your payment provider, but keep it simple and stick to these basics–donation amount, name, email, credit card information.

Keep your design clean and simple without unnecessary graphics. You should have minimal donation amounts (no more than five, but even less is better). Don’t include all the information to fill out for in honor/memory gifts unless selected, or maybe don’t even include this information at all since it is mostly unused for the majority of organizations.

Read more