We are so excited to welcome Tom Vance to the Tackle team! Tom recently joined our team as an Associate Consultant and he is already helping make our client’s technology shine.

Tom comes to Tackle with a solid background working on staff at nonprofits. He brings a high level of understanding of the challenges nonprofits face, especially with their technology. His first-hand knowledge of development, fundraising, programming, culture, and communications puts him in a unique position when working with our clients to achieve their technology goals. We are confident you will be in great hands with Tom when working on your next project at Tackle.

Check out what Tom had to say in this Q&A below.

Tell us about yourself.

As a white, queer, lo-fi femme millenial – I approach the world understanding that parts of the world were made for me and other parts were not. Therefore social change work is core to who I am.

In my short life so far, has entailed serving on a capital campaign to raise $15 million for a new homeless shelter; developed and implemented a grasstops organizing strategy to get more funding to LGBTQ+ community organizations; and most recently, built an advancement team to help a Black serving nonprofit survive the COVID-19 endemic.

Through all this time, I’ve been using technology to manage donor relationships and program outcomes to continue securing funding for mission critical work. Helping organizations embrace technology can reduce paperwork, create 360 customer views and help break organizational silos leading to more innovation to solve the world’s leading challenges.

What do you value most when working with clients?

Being a consultant lets you touch the work of multiple missions and the lives of extremely passionate people trying to make a difference in our world. I’m reminded of a quote from Lila Watson, “If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.” To build the future we want, we have to work together.

What excites you most about helping nonprofits with their technology?

How technology can be used to achieve an organization’s mission. And the easier the technology is to use, the bigger return on investment the organization can get. If I can get organizations out of spreadsheets and disconnected systems, they can scale their work and get closer to fulfilling their mission.

How would your work help Tackle move in the forward direction?

My intercultural development background will support Tackle navigate the challenges of having a growing team of consultants. The more people you have the more intentional about organization culture you have to be.

I’m a bit of a nerd about this because this is how you find out whether your org culture supports diversity and inclusion or not. Many social change advocates use the intercultural development continuum to unpack where a culture is and what work needs to happen to create a more inclusive environment. **Spoiler Alert** self-awareness is one of the critical activities!

Have any other questions for Tom regarding his role at Tackle? I know he would love to hear from you or connect on LinkedIn.

We know Tom will truly benefit our team and our clients, and we can’t wait for you to work with him on your next project with Tackle.

Everyone on our team is excited to welcome Bria Harris to Tackle! Bria joined our team last month as our Marketing Intern. She has already been such an amazing addition to our marketing and sales team and we are thrilled she came on board.

While Bria is still early in her career, she still brings some solid writing experience, marketing and engagement ideas, and social media management. We know her perspective will positively help us connect our clients to the technology they need.

Learn a little more about Bria in this Q&A below.

Tell us a little about yourself.

I am a Michigan native who comes from a deep blue collar background. A recent graduate from the University of Toledo where I got my Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing with a minor in Information Systems. I also have an MBA in Finance from the University of Toledo. I like to make every opportunity a learning experience. Experiencing different industries such as higher education and financial services has given me the ability to transition well into a new environment, especially since I’m early in my career.

When I’m not working, I like to establish content for my personal finance brand, spend time with family and friends, read books, travel, and live out my foodie dreams. I am a lover of new experiences and with that comes being able to have a great imagination.

What unique experiences do you bring to our team at Tackle?

My background consists of generating content that people from all walks of life can relate to. I began to develop my digital marketing skills through a series of school project work, previous marketing job experiences, and creating a brand out as a side project.

Marketing is the voice of the organization. It combines business acumen with creative processes of connecting people. As a marketer, the job comes with being able to wear many hats and the ability to multitask effectively. For me, it’s a role I am passionate about so to be here at Tackle, I can give the team a fresh perspective that’ll help us grow the organization.

What interests you in working with nonprofits?

At the heart of nonprofit work is community support. I consider myself a community-first type of person because I’m always willing to be a team player and help others succeed. When I first started to look into the nonprofit sector, I noticed a great need for people with business skills. In the nonprofit world, it’s important to have business intelligence since you cannot just run an organization on community alone. Knowing how to operate strategically is how you keep a nonprofit running. Being able to bridge a gap between community development and making good business decisions is what I’ll bring the more I spend working with nonprofits.

What are you most excited to learn in this role?

What excites me most about working here is that I get a chance to sharpen my skills as a marketer. Marketing is the first point of contact in getting clients to work with us. To use marketing skills to make an impact is always an exciting thing to do. The ability to create content that supports our company efforts is what I look forward to.

Have any other questions for Bria regarding her role at Tackle? I know she would love to hear from you or connect on LinkedIn.

We are pumped to have Bria on our team! Keep an eye out for her posts on Tackle’s blog and social media and be sure to give them some likes and shares.

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

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.

Tackle is excited to announce our latest addition to our team, Kim Martinez! Kim is joining our team as the Services + Project Operations Manager and we know her previous experience will be a huge benefit to our team and to our clients.

Kim has over 20 years of combined experience in operations and services management for nonprofits and for-profit entities. Leveraging the tools of technology and project management, she’s worked with organizations to build community programs, research service models, and manage fundraising and advocacy initiatives. Kim is personable and creative, and we know our clients can rely on her to advance their technology and see their organizations grow.

We thought we would hand it over to Kim to share her insights into stepping into this new role at Tackle.

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m a native Austinite and I grew up in the restaurant business. I earned my Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Concordia University with a minor in Sociology. In the workplace, I love developing processes and workflows to establish a consistent but personalized experience for clients. Outside of work, I spend time with my aging parents, my partner, and my furry children (Kipper and Weasley). I’m a caregiver at heart. I also love to sneak away with my partner to enjoy a good hike in a national or state park, a day adventure of zip-lining or visiting a wildlife sanctuary, and I hope to one day see the Aurora Borealis!

Why are you passionate about supporting nonprofits?

Nonprofits fill a role for so many people across this planet—research, direct services, advocacy, representation, ongoing support, and connection. I believe we all want to find a place where we can effect change, receive the support we need, impact the potential and success of others, and ultimately belong.

What unique experiences do you bring to our team at Tackle?

My background has consistently been to deliver services through project and program management. My focus is to listen and help generate creative solutions, establish best practices, identify risk factors, and ensure good communication with all stakeholders.

Project management is key for most any initiative. Primary variables include scope, time, and cost—and each is constrained by the other. My understanding of how to manage these variables, pivot when needed, assessing risks (positive or negative), and adjusting expectations will be key to keeping the balance so that we can deliver services on time and within budget.

What do you value when working with clients?

I most value honesty and the willingness of clients to embrace and solve for the challenges of technology. For me, it’s all about working at an organic level with organizations—human to human—to wield the power of technology for a greater good.

Have any other questions for Kim regarding her role at Tackle? I know she would love to hear from you or connect on LinkedIn.

We truly are so thrilled to have Kim join us at Tackle, and we can’t wait for you to work with her on your next project with Tackle.

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.