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Order from Chaos: How DonorSearch Makes Data Work for Your Organization

In the modern economy, one thing is certain, your outreach efforts are only as good as your data. This truism applies to both businesses seeking customers and non-profits courting donors, subscribers, or supporters. Fortunately, DonorSearch Aristotle empowers organizations to unlock data to discover, qualify, and prioritize the best fundraising opportunities. 

Good Data vs Bad Data

The key? Discerning good data from bad. After all, strong data can lead to support for a non-profit’s good works—for years, if not decades. Weak data can spin an organization’s wheels, wasting time and money. Knowing this to be true, it’s crucial that non-profits and charitable organizations make their data work for them today to build a better tomorrow.

Bad Data

But first, let’s define bad data. We can loosely describe it as poor or incomplete, or information not relevant to the question being asked. Bad data leads to inefficiencies, poor decisions, and worst of all, more bad data. IBM performed an analysis of bad data’s impact on the economy in 2016, estimating poor information cost the combined for-profit and non-profit economies an astounding $3.1 trillion a year, a figure that’s likely increased in the years since it was completed. 

Worse yet, the Harvard Business Review completed a study that found employees spend up to a whopping 50% of their workday fixing problems and errors with data. (So much time-wasting hits non-profits particularly hard as they typically have fewer people doing more, making wild goose chases caused by possessing poor data even more deleterious.) 

Good Data

Good data, on the other hand, is reliable information that’s complete, accurate, and provides actionable answers to important questions. In the non-profit world, an important query typically goes like this: “Who has the capacity and the demonstrated commitment to giving generously to our cause?” Sourcing the answer to this inquiry with a robust data-driven approach often leads to organizational success—as so many non-profits have learned by partnering with DonorSearch. 

What’s more, the first step to unlocking the potential of good data is recognizing data is not a commodity. Commodities, like agricultural products, are traded on the understanding they are interchangeable. (Of course, some non-profits still consider potential donor data to be a commodity that’s similar from vendor to vendor, but in practice, nothing could be further from the truth.)

Quality Of Data

Instead, the quality of data differs widely, as does its ability to suggest prospects who not only have the capacity to give but also feel sufficient engagement with your organization to prompt a gift. For non-profits, data quality can be measured by the information provided. For instance, does it follow a “legacy” approach of focusing primarily on wealth? Or does it factor in more critical variables, like an individual’s affinity for your organization? 

Ultimately, the value of high-quality data reveals its utility via positive interactions, for instance, with potential donors you may not have even considered in the past. Even so, good quality data in itself isn’t so useful, unless it’s in the right place at the right time. By the way, it might seem strange to think about good data having the right place to be, but it clearly does——in those systems you already utilize to manage your organization.

How DonorSearch Makes Data Work for YOUR Organization

Cognizant of this reality, DonorSearch offers the most widely integrated tools available to non-profits, collaborating with 35 different CRM and fundraising tools. (Remember, a Harvard Business study found employees can waste up to 50% of their day dealing with bad data, and some portion of this time is squandered just trying to get data into the right system.) On the contrary, our airtight integration with leading platforms means DonorSearch data is always at your fingertips in the systems you use the most— and right when you need it. 

Just as good data is not a commodity, it should not remain static, either. Real-life is not carved in stone, so why should the data driving your fundraising be? Instead, DonorSearch Aristotle harnesses the power of machine learning to create a dataset that’s constantly refining itself to provide even greater accuracy over time. Yes, good data helps non-profits identify potential donors who will help take your organization to the next level, but DonorSearch Aristotle goes further. Learning from the past produces even better actionable intelligence.

Certainly, accurate data that “just works” is every non-profit’s dream, but DonorSearch makes it a reality. Every day, our team of experts helps non-profits discover a treasure trove of insights into their community, identifying potential donors with a strong affinity towards an organization and the means to give. DonorSearch also enables its partners to create harmony between institutional knowledge already in a CRM and fresh data that’s continually improving thanks to AI. Such synergy directly translates into ROI, and more importantly, a robust and growing community of donors and supporters. 


If you are ready to achieve success with the donors of tomorrow, let’s talk. Contact our team to arrange a demo of DonorSearch Aristotle today.

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