Sisters of the Presentation achieve key efficiencies in database management.
The Sisters of the Presentation share a vision of a better world for the poor, sick, and uneducated by incarnating the hospitality of God, confronting injustice, and working for peace. In order to drive impact, the Sisters needed a database to manage donor data in a meaningful way. Their partnership with Blackbaud saves time and reduces manual processes, while personalizing their outreach to donors—resulting in increased online donations and new donor acquisition.
Just a few years ago, the Sisters of the Presentation was using a database that required a lot of manual entry to manage the donors. The Sisters needed a database solution that would provide a more efficient way to populate fields, keep records organized, and handle credit card donations. After consulting with another Sister organization using Blackbaud solutions, the group decided to go with Blackbaud eTapestry because it’s an easy-to-learn database and tracks information the way the Sisters wanted. The Sisters also chose Blackbaud Merchant Services™ so they could begin processing credit card donations.
Prior to having Blackbaud eTapestry, the Sisters sent out prayer cards letting their supporters know they would be taking requests for prayers on All Souls Day. They had thousands of cards returned to them, but didn’t have a sufficient place to store all the information at the time, so it all went into a box. When Karen Tuecke, partners in mission coordinator at the organization, came onboard she knew the Sisters could use that data in some way. After populating the information in Blackbaud eTapestry and developing queries for the reporting features, the team is able to send out hundreds of cards for birthdays, memorials, and anniversaries each month.
Now, the Sisters are able to communicate with donors on a more personal level and have found that card recipients have been so appreciative, that they donate afterwards.
Not only is donor outreach and fundraising more personal, but it’s also more efficient. The Sisters send out thank you letters on a daily basis, and being able to easily query to determine who to reach out to saves the team a lot of time. Karen has also customized her home screen to show top donors, which allows her to click on a donor, make a phone call, say thank you, and start building a relationship. She sets up personal goals to determine where the organization is at in regards to fundraising, and she’s able to change her approach at any time based on appeal progress or overall performance.
Achieving Sustainable Growth Goals
When the Sisters of the Presentation went live with Blackbaud Merchant Services, it raised $5,500 online. In one year, online donations doubled to $11,600. Karen is very confident that these numbers will continue to rise. “Using Blackbaud Merchant Services has been more convenient for our donors, and it allows them the ability to make decisions without having to go to the post office and mail a donation,” she says.
The Sisters of the Presentation has also continued to see an increase in new donors, growing from 142 new donors to 188 in just one year. “This sets the pace that we are creating sustainability and when I report to my leadership team, I am able to show them exactly where we stand with our goals and why,” says Karen.
Sharing Their Success and Doing More Good
After leveraging Blackbaud eTapestry, Karen attended the National Catholic Development Conference in Washington, D.C., where the Sisters of the Presentation was recognized for its innovation. At the conference, Karen showcased the organization’s fundraising strategy and explained how other
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