All posts by Marianna Woodruff

Making Your Data Work For You

By | Data Management | No Comments

A mantra that we live by at DonorLynk, and want you to live by as well: make your data work for you, not against you. For years you have built up data from all operations at your nonprofit. If you are not learning or growing from the data you have, then the data is not working for you. We advise you to look to a few key pieces when evaluating if your CRM is representing your success and relationships best.

Custom Fields

Record layouts for contacts, accounts, events, etc. that are tailored to the organization’s way of understanding the data gives way to accurate expectations for donors and volunteers. Custom fields reflect how they have been involved and can be involved. Custom fields in event and campaign records ensure you have year by year comparisons of budgets, sponsorships, goals met, and much more. Customization is essential in having your data work for you.

Internal Communication

Shared calendar, email sync, meeting requests, and chatting within your CRM allow you to share snapshots of data in no time at all with fellow members of your team. Donor acknowledgment process need an update? Make changes on the fly by scheduling a short meeting with your development team. You’ll all understand what changes work because you’re dealing with the same data every day.


With the data exchanged through internal communication and taken from custom fields, you have the perfect environment to keep reporting simple. Reporting will deliver the final verdict on if your data is working for you or not. Keep data clean, keep it organized, and let your reports do the talking.

Refine and refresh your nonprofit’s data management practices by connecting with us!

Marianna Woodruff is Director of Brand Awareness at DonorLynk, LLC. DonorLynk aims to provide nonprofits with tailored solutions that work for you, not against you.

Get a Sense for Your Events

By | Data Management, Fundraising | No Comments

This ain’t your first rodeo, and, no doubt, that it is not your first event either. You know the ropes, but there are still key steps that are being delayed or are forgotten altogether. The event management piece of our custom Salesforce solutions for nonprofits ensure that you never miss a beat again.

Send invitation emails through Salesforce so that every contact record reflects that that individual was indeed invited. Keep eyes on responses, the many yeses and the few nos, so that you can follow up appropriately with automated event reminders or tickets sent to their email inboxes.

For many contacts in your system, the invitation will look differently. For these select businesses and companies, you will send a sponsorship package. You can then monitor the different levels of sponsorship that are confirmed by these partner businesses, and continue to plan your event accordingly. These supplements give your event the extra support it needs to really achieve new levels of success.

As you continue monitoring individual and sponsorship invitation responses, you can rest easy that email reminders and important notifications are performing as expected within the Salesforce framework. Direct your attention to the many deadlines and milestones of event planning. For annual events that have the same general to do list from year to year, use Salesforce to overlay these to do list tasks in your event record. Be able to check off and date when tasks are completed and auto generate reminders as needed for upcoming deadlines.

As you plan for the event and after all is said and done, utilize Salesforce to track donations pouring in to support your good work. Supply updates to your team and board of how much of the fundraising goal has been met leading up to the event through simple reporting. Then, for the weeks following the event, know that your goal can still be met or even exceeded as you follow up with attendees.

Ready to shape up your event management process? Give us a call at 615-624-4176!

Marianna Woodruff is Director of Brand Awareness at DonorLynk, LLC. DonorLynk aims to provide nonprofits with tailored solutions that work for you, not against you.

Selecting the Best Potential Donors for You

By | Fundraising | No Comments

Emphasizing quality over quantity at your nonprofit goes a long way. You’re familiar with the saying, sure, but putting it into practice can take the backseat. Increasing financial support from year to year is top priority. Today, we’ll examine a handful of ways that nonprofits can make sure every potential donor is the right fit when investing in a mission.

Acknowledge Investment

Make yourselves aware of how each donor has been invested in other community organizations. Use this info to go ahead and create their donor profile in your CRM. Their passions play a major role in future conversations and calls to action.

Determine Interests

After noting their other nonprofit connections, get acquainted with their interests, hobbies, and skills. Are they active and athletic? Enjoy planning and parties? Continue to give depth to their donor profile, by including their key interests that you’ll be able to reference as the relationship evolves.

Select the Where and the When

Next, go ahead and make the ask. The foundation has been laid for a quality relationship, so the next step is obvious to both of you. Make the ask in a way that makes sense according to their preferences. Offer a way to make an online gift, describe the process of giving in kind donations, where to send a check, how to get involved as a volunteer, etc. The how, where, and when of making a gift, in detail, is yet another way you can go the extra mile in building this quality relationship.

Replicate What Works

When selecting the best donors for you, if this process works, replicate it. Continue to refine the above three ways to involve the best potential prospects with your nonprofit. No one person is alike, and these ways are flexible enough that they can apply to many conversational and relational circumstances.

Ready to improve your donor acquisition methodology? Connect with us today!

Marianna Woodruff is Director of Brand Awareness at DonorLynk, LLC. DonorLynk aims to provide nonprofits with tailored solutions that work for you, not against you.

Taking the Headache Out of Acknowledgment

By | Donor Management | No Comments

Obviously, you are grateful for the donors that give to your organization. However, the truth is, you wear many hats at your nonprofit, and your to do list never ends. That is where these four steps to simple, but quality, acknowledgment come in handy!

Directing Traffic

First, you must direct donors, as many as are willing, to give to your nonprofit online. By giving online, they give you more control over the acknowledgment of their gifts and the retention plan you follow with them.

Keeping Things Personal

Second, ensure that you add a personal touch by creating and updating email templates regularly. Because the gifts were made online, a personal acknowledgment will be sent directly to the donor’s inbox upon gift submission. Receipts are a thing of the past; offer a modern way to show you received their thoughtful donation successfully.

Enabling Workflow

Third, from the initial acknowledgment to an online gift, a predetermined workflow of emails and task reminders would be triggered. Taking the steps you’re used to doing manually and automating them will ensure the full process takes place every. single. time.

Custom Follow Up

Finally, keep the steps from your workflow (emails, calls, face to face chats) custom to the communication style of your nonprofit. What is your communication style? Full of details? More spaced out? It’s up to you. With customization as your ally, you can accomplish a lot of cool conversations with new and long time donors.

We are here to activate these acknowledgment steps at your nonprofit! Connect today!

Marianna Woodruff is Director of Brand Awareness at DonorLynk, LLC. DonorLynk aims to provide nonprofits with tailored solutions that work for you, not against you.

Tips for Better Conversations with Donors

By | Donor Management | No Comments

Whether you actively pursue better relationships with donors or your relationships have plateaued, three key pieces that improve conversations with supporters are quality, frequency, and satisfaction. Focus on quality of your communication breathes new life into relationships with long time donors. Checking in frequently encourages a renewed sense of commitment. Keeping donors satisfied by educating them on new programs and upcoming events increases your retention rate. Let’s dive into a few additional ways to make this tips work for your nonprofit!


  • Understand the interests of the donor, how they look to plug in past giving, and work these interests into face to face meetings, emails, calls, etc.
  • Take initiative to know how the donor is connected to other donors, community organizations, partner businesses, and how those connections led them to involvement with your organization


  • Setup automated emails to be sent to donors so they never miss an update from your nonprofit. Automation is powerful!
  • Assign a gift officer to donors so that no task to touch base falls through the cracks.


  • Use every interaction to satisfy the donors’ desire to not simply do, but act as well. Activate their support!
  • By emphasizing focus on quality and frequency, you will have already done your part to satisfy the donor as they seek to be a part of meeting organization goals and realizing the potential of your community impact.

Improve donor relationships with the help of a custom donor management solution! Learn more today!

Marianna Woodruff is Director of Brand Awareness at DonorLynk, LLC. DonorLynk aims to provide nonprofits with tailored solutions that work for you, not against you.