Back in February, we spoke with EverTrue Customer Success Manager Courtney Camps about her experience bringing GivingTree to Boston University. Today, Courtney builds on that success with Union College.
I sat down to chat with Courtney about Union’s strong results with the EverTrue platform so far. Check out our Q&A below!
What were Union’s goals in bringing GivingTree into their existing fundraising plans?
For Union, they were focused on several things. First off, they were determined to gather better data and ensure that they had the best possible career data about their prospects, whether that be parents, alumni, or grandparents. Having comprehensive, up-to-date career info was essential, and particularly something they saw as critical towards helping them maximize their fundraising efforts.
Number two—Union had some ambitious annual fund campaign goals they were determined to meet. So, the newfound ability to utilize Facebook engagement and social data to assist in reaching these goals was monumental. Truly, Union has always valued experimentation and innovation in their fundraising approach, so it was no surprise when they dove head first into using social data to help them reach their annual fund targets.
And lastly, they are always looking to uncover unknown prospects. Being able to combine all of their detailed social data on a platform—one that is easy and extremely user-friendly—has allowed them to reveal approximately 500 engaged prospects and potential donors, who would have otherwise been off their radar.
What has been the key to Union’s success?
One aspect that has been critical to Union’s success so far is their unyielding commitment to collaboration. Despite being a small team, they have a core group of people working closely together to ensure this data is being used effectively. Initially, we were working with their Senior Director of Development, Nick Famulare, and later brought in their Director of Advancement Services, Kathy McCann, in the process of starting to work with GivingTree. Having their strong leadership buy-in from the beginning has been fundamental to Union’s success, as they are always encouraging their team to be using the product and maximizing their time, effort, and energy.
I’ve found that the schools who have had the most success with GivingTree are the ones where their advancement leaders take risks and help lead their team through those risks with action plans.
How have you enjoyed working with the Union team and seeing their progress?
Union is one of my favorite teams to work with. We have grown together throughout their initial use of EverTrue’s Community app, paired later with their use of GivingTree. Our relationship has spanned a long time, but it is one that is strong—a rewarding comfort in this field. I believe Union has considered EverTrue a thought leader from the get-go. Their collaboration with us has produced several great case studies, whitepapers, and conferences, and their willingness to work cohesively has been fundamental to our own success as a company.
Every member of their team is fun and a pleasure to work with. Marna Redding, who is their Director of Alumni and Parent Engagement, has been our internal champion at Union since day one. She and Damond Heath [Associate Director of Alumni and Parent Engagement] are notable alumni and parent leaders. Christen Gowan and her communications team demonstrate the experimental strengths of the overall Union team, and it has been pivotal having communications united with advancement throughout this process.