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What a Luxury Car Can Teach Us About Donor Management Software

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This week I traveled to Wichita, Kansas for the AFP Mid-America Conference. The conference was lovely, but this blog post is about the car I rented. When I rent a car, I go to Orbitz, put in my search parameters, and get a large grid showing about 100 different options from about a dozen different companies. It only takes me a second to select the car I will rent because, in this grid, the smallest, least expensive car is always in the upper left hand corner of the grid.

When I went to pick up my car, much to my surprise (not really), they didn’t have the economy car that I had reserved available. I don’t know if this is your experience, but I am beginning to believe economy cars do not exist in car rental fleets. I usually end up with a mid-size or even full-size car. This time, though, when the man who pulls around the cars brought the keys to the counter he and the woman renting the car to me looked at the computer screen where the price I was paying was listed then looked at one another and both shrugged their shoulders. “Hmm…” I thought. “This could be good!”

What I ended up with was a top of the line, fully loaded Lincoln crossover something or other. It was luxurious and a really nice, smooth ride. What was even better, though, that I came to realize the more I drove it is that this car is smart! The first thing I noticed about this car’s above average intelligence is that it shows me a picture of what’s behind me when I’m backing up (I later realized it also warns me with a beeping sound when I’m about to back into something – did I mention I’m not used to driving such a large vehicle?). The second thing I noticed is that a light on the side mirror illuminates to warn me when a car is in my blind spot. Brilliant! Then, when I used the window washer to clean off some bugs, the wipers swayed back and forth a few times to clear the cleaning solution and then stopped, paused, and wiped one more time to get the last few drops that inevitably roll up the windshield after the wipers stop.

The more I thought about how this car was so much smarter than your average vehicle, the more I began to think about how Bloomerang is smarter than your average donor management software. Bloomerang is continuously calculating and showing you your real-time retention rate. Bloomerang figures out and tells you which constituents are most engaged with your organization and ready for an upgrade and which ones may need a little extra attention in order to prevent them from lapsing. Bloomerang points out for you how long a donor has been giving, how much they’ve upgraded or downgraded, and if these upgrades/downgrades are trends. So, you see, like the car I rented that I was so impressed with, Bloomerang is not your average donor database. It is extra smart!

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