Published on
July 20, 2017

Setup a consultation

5 Innovative Ways to Use Salesforce That Will Make Your Nonprofit More Successful

Many nonprofit organizations have adopted Salesforce as their customer relationship management software (CRM) to achieve their goals. Salesforce helps nonprofits keep track of members, their preferences, conversations with them, and interactions with prospects.

Salesforce offers many functional and flexible features; it's possible for users to miss some creative ways to use it. Here are five strategic moves your nonprofit make with Salesforce to supercharge relationship management.

1. Create Groups or Segments for Email Campaigns

A nonprofit can segment donors using a variety of methods and requirements. Segmentation allows the nonprofit to choose specific groups and target information customized for them — to send the right message to the right group at exactly the right time, which increases the probability of achieving the desired results from a campaign.

Here's a way segmenting can help: A nonprofit maintains separates list of board members, current members, past members, and prospective members. The team decides to launch a campaign to encourage past members to renew their membership. With Salesforce, they can craft a special message for this group rather than use the same renewal reminder they send to current members.

2. Use Communities to Communicate with Beneficiaries, Donors, and Employees

Salesforce Community Cloud provides nonprofits with a simple way to connect donors with each other and recipients. Nonprofits can also use communities for real-time collaboration, information sharing, and customer service. Users can share files, data, and records. And they can check into the community on any mobile device.

A nonprofit's big annual fundraiser, for instance, offers an opportunity for reaping the benefits of creating a special community. The nonprofit can set up the community so only those on the event's committee have access to it. Through the community, the team can document their plans, build a checklist of tasks, share graphics and program files, post task updates, and manage the budget.

3. Use Web-to-Lead Feature in Salesforce

Nonprofits publish forms on their website to collect information and give people a way to submit an inquiry. When a person fills out the form on the website, Salesforce's Web-to-Lead feature creates a new Lead record in Salesforce. The new lead can be assigned to ensure someone follows up quickly.

When a form isn't automatically tied-in with Salesforce, the data is sent to someone for follow up. The person receiving the data from the submitted form must manually enter the data into Salesforce. Salesforce will have no record of this lead or the submitted information until it is entered.

While a manual process can work, each additional step offers the opportunity for a mistake, typo, delay, or information loss in response and tracking. When nonprofits use Web-to-Lead, tying the website form with Salesforce, they find it easier to track leads and follow ups.

4. Send SMS to Individuals, Groups, or Segments

Many organizations send SMS messages to quickly communicate timely information. For example, one organization sends a group SMS when its younger members return from a trip. This lets families know when they can pick up their kids. The same organization has a separate group to send SMS to committee members to get approvals on unexpected expenses that can't wait until the next board meeting. And it can all be done within Salesforce using an AppExchange app like Open SMS Pro.

The Salesforce SMS app keeps a record of the two-way conversations that include the outgoing message, the response, and timestamps for both. All of it is captured in Salesforce. Open SMS Pro allows the nonprofit's staff to have a two-way chat with recipients through Salesforce. The staff also doesn’t have to worry about giving out private mobile numbers. With a little gateway magic, the app uses one phone number for the entire organization.

5. Set up Automated Tasks in Salesforce

A nonprofit can maximize its effectiveness with automated tasks in Salesforce. For instance, a fundraising campaign involves many moving parts and individuals. Users can create tasks in Salesforce that can be automated and assigned to individuals responsible for completing those tasks.

You can set up Salesforce to generate automated reports and a dashboard to keep people in the loop about the campaign's progress. This guarantees the success of the campaign by making sure they meet deadlines without anything falling through the cracks.

Salesforce contains many powerful features that can help nonprofit organizations be more efficient and effective. As a result, they can use the time they save to focus on the organization's core business.

These five innovative ways barely scratch the surface of what's possible with Salesforce for nonprofits. To find more ways to make you more successful, please contact us at

Related posts