Salem State University Reaches $25 Million Campaign Goal With EverTrue
Salem State University, a four-year public university located in Salem, Massachusetts, with 10,000 students and over 78,000 constituent records.Challenge
Salem State was nearing the end of its first ever comprehensive campaign—a multi-year effort to raise $25 million. With $5 million to go and having exhausted the school’s largest donors, the Salem State advancement team was laser-focused on discovering new prospects to cultivate and solicit. However, this was challenging due to inadequate access to their data, outdated business information, and a small, time-strapped staff.Why EverTrue
To address these issues and breathe new life into the campaign, Salem State purchased EverTrue. The team hoped that EverTrue would cover for recent staff cuts as well as make prospect identification easier and more efficient across the whole team—from major gifts, to annual giving, to research.Results
Ever since partnering with EverTrue, Salem State has been able to take what AVP of Institutional Advancement Cheryl Crounse calls "an Amazon approach to fundraising."
"If you like or look at something on [Amazon's] page, they start marketing every time you're anywhere on the web," Crounse said. "We're trying to match our alumni who are liking these things to things that we need.”
EverTrue's dynamic data from LinkedIn, Facebook, Zillow, and more are helping the Salem State team prospect quicker and align giving opportunities to alumni interests. In addition, EverTrue has streamlined the team’s access to constituent data, allowing them to be more proactive instead of relying on the already-swamped data team.
• Completed the $25 million campaign.
• 59% increase in the number of donors who gave gifts of less than $1,000.*
• 70% increase in total dollars brought in from donors who gave $1,000 or more.*
• Discovery of a planned gift donor in San Francisco through an EverTrue list.
• $5,000 gift from a previously unknown alumnus identified in EverTrue.
*A comparison of the same four-month time frame in 2014 versus 2015.
The user-friendly nature of EverTrue makes the data readily available and much more accessible to the average person. It helps our staff do the initial discovery of prospects on their own without having to put a request in and then waiting two weeks for that information. It’s instant gratification and takes some of the burden off of the data team.
Increasing Efficiency and Intelligence on the Road
For the frontline team, EverTrue has become a “one-stop shop” for prospecting. Instead of going to multiple different sources for information—which would take up to an hour—development officers can click on a constituent’s profile in EverTrue, have all the information at their fingertips, and decide whether or not to pursue the prospect. Michael Randall, Director of Major and Planned Gifts at Salem State, uses EverTrue to prepare for meetings, assess the donor’s interests, and record notes after meetings. Plus, with a Google Maps view of constituents, he can quickly add visits to trips and fill in cancelled meetings.
All of the information is there, and it’s very easy to navigate on any device, including my iPad. Before, we didn’t have that. EverTrue has saved me time, it’s saved me frustration, and honestly, it's increased my ability to be spontaneous and quick on things.
Rejuvenating the Prospect Pipeline and Saving Time on Research
Because of EverTrue’s integration with LinkedIn, the advancement services team no longer wastes time cleaning up career information. Instead, they can focus their efforts on making the fundraising team more successful. Before monthly prospect meetings, Salem State’s Director of Advancement Services Jeannie Patch relies on EverTrue to compile fresh lists of prospects for development officers. The platform has been a “big time saver” whether she is performing quick research on an alum or working to infuse the pipeline with new names.
EverTrue is so much easier than running queries in our database. When I have to present new prospects every month, I don’t have to scramble around and try to carve out the time. It’s so much faster for me to go into EverTrue and find interesting people that the officers will be excited to have in their portfolios.
Engaging Alumni Through Targeted Marketing
With over 50 programs and events annually, Salem State works tirelessly to build relationships with alumni and friends. EverTrue facilitates this process by helping the event planning team identify the best alumni to reach out to. Using EverTrue, Salem State’s Director of Alumni Affairs Mandy Ray is able to segment alumni by any criteria she chooses—including reunion year, major, location, industry, giving history, Facebook engagement, and more. Instead of submitting a request to the data team, EverTrue empowers Mandy and her team to instantly pull the information they need and target specific alumni for event and volunteer opportunities.
EverTrue has helped us open the door and have conversations with alumni. It gives us an opportunity to see what individuals are actually engaged, whether through social media or giving, so that we can target them in our outreach and boost attendance and participation.