Data Analysis and Enhancement

At American Philanthropic we seek to cut through the noise and the buzzwords about data that have slowly infiltrated the nonprofit space. Machine learning, artificial intelligence, and our personal favorite “psychographic profiles”.

Let’s get real: these are marketing terms more than they are mathematical processes, meant not to serve clients but to confuse them on the road to high fees. Too often, nonprofits are sold overpriced snake oil.

Data is a very double-edged sword. Used improperly or poorly interpreted, it can be a detriment rather than an asset. The horror stories abound: the nonprofit that ceased its donor acquisition program because a board member saw a bar graph that showed that the program was losing money up front. The nonprofit that stopped mailing all its donors because many of them said in a survey that they only want to hear from a nonprofit once per year. Or the nonprofit who asked a billionaire for a $1,000 check because that’s all their automated gift range calculation told them to ask for.

American Philanthropic’s data products offer two very rare things:

  1. Data analysis & enhancements that your organization can actually use and act on right away to improve fundraising performance.
  2. Advice & counsel on how to use that data effectively, based on our decades of experience with hundreds of nonprofits across the country.
    Useful data, correctly interpreted. That’s the American Philanthropic way.

Data Enhancements

You can’t increase your donors’ giving if you can’t reach out to them effectively. We can update your donor records by appending or updating:

  • Addresses
  • Cell Phone Numbers
  • Email addresses

And we can provide meaningful additional data on your donors that can help optimize your communications and fundraising strategies:

  • Giving capacity estimates
  • Connections to charitable foundations & other nonprofits
  • Birthdays
  • Real estate holdings
  • Luxury lifestyle indicators (owning planes or boats, for example)
  • Find donors who are employees of companies that offer matching gifts

Predictive Analytics

Our predictive modeling service takes your existing donor data—with or without any data enhancements—to mine for patterns that predict contributor behaviors.

Staff time and resources are always limited in nonprofits, so the goal of this service is simple: actionable predictions about key donor activity that can make your development department more efficient than ever before.

We provide a data model that scores your entire database and discuss with your team high return on investment strategies your development team could pursue based on our findings, answering questions like:

  • Which of my donors are most likely to give again, and to give at a higher amount?
  • Which of my low dollar donors are most likely to upgrade to my major giving club?
  • Does volunteering with my organization, or reading our email newsletter, actually increase the likelihood of renewing or making larger gifts?
  • Who is most likely to consider leaving my organization in their will or estate plans?
  • Which of my alumni or program participants are likely to become donors?

We can build models for nearly any question that is holding back your development questions, given enough positive data points to draw upon.

Donor and Constituent Surveys

What do your donors really think about you? Outside of your organization, where are they getting news or information on the issues your nonprofit works on? How do they conceive of their philanthropic giving, and where does your organization fit into that picture?

A good fundraising operation is always carefully listening to its donors. American Philanthropic creates custom donor surveys to get at the questions key to your fundraising success. We collect information from large numbers of respondents, then perform follow up phone interviews to explore key sticking points in wider survey data.

We provide clients full raw results, and a detailed analysis that includes crosstabs and correlations to shine light on specific donor clusters. For example, are your high dollar donors more likely to read your direct mail pieces? Do your newest donors gravitate toward particular forms of media that you aren’t taking full advantage of?

Our surveys can also serve as incredibly valuable lead generation tools—we can help you find donors who indicate they are open to leaving your organization in their will (or have already done so), or who would consider a major gift in the future.

Integrated Data Services

Because we are not just a data firm, American Philanthropic can seamlessly integrate our data products with our database services, targeted research on individuals and foundations, capital campaign planning, and direct response services, so that your work and ours is never siloed off and left unused.