When it comes to advocacy and movement building, tech and tools can magnify your impact. The benefits of using advocacy tech include quicker communication, increased reach, and faster supporter mobilization.
Advocacy tech can be easily leveraged, even for those who aren’t technically savvy. Use this quick guide to navigate the wide landscape of advocacy tech and find the best match for you:
What Is Advocacy Tech and What Can It Do for Me?
Advocacy tech is any software solution that helps you mobilize for your cause, at every level of your supporters’ journeys:
- Outreach tools help you reach out to potential supporters, attract attention for your movement, and build your subscriber list.
- Engagement tools drive swift communication between your organization and new and existing supporters. You can use these engagement opportunities to boost involvement and action from supporters.
- Contact management tools facilitate the organization of your supporters’ contact, engagement, and fundraising information. Even tracking information for a few dozen contacts can become challenging as their supporter journeys evolve!
- Fundraising tools are straightforward: they help you raise money. Cumbersome and lengthy donation processes can decrease conversion rates and discourage supporters from contributing; well-built fundraising technology can mitigate this issue and even encourage recurring donations. Eventually, you'll want many of your supporters to be recurring donors, as recurring donations result in more total contributions than one-off donations.
You can use one type of advocacy tech, or a combination of a few, to supercharge your advocacy efforts. But before committing to any one solution, spend a few moments considering your organization’s goals and capacity for implementing a new tool.
What Should I Look For in Advocacy Tools?
Whether you're looking to switch systems or just getting started with advocacy tech, ask yourself these questions to decide which tools are the right match for your organization:
- Does it connect with my CRM? A CRM (customer relationship management) database, is a system that tracks your organization’s relationships with its supporters. (Well-known examples of CRMs are Salesforce, NGP VAN, or EveryAction.) If you plan to consolidate your supporter data with a CRM system, choose advocacy tech that makes it easy to transfer data from one platform to another. Ideally, your advocacy tech should sync seamlessly to your CRM to reduce work for your team.
- How robust is the technology? Of course, the level of complexity you need from your advocacy tech will depend on your needs — but it'll also depend on the size of your organization, the maturity of your supporter audience, and how many people on your team will use it. For example, you could determine that you need a simple tech solution to accommodate your newly-established grassroots group. Or, you may want a sophisticated tool to help organize hundreds of thousands of supporters.
- Does it fit my price range? Many free advocacy tools exist, but you may have the budget to invest in tech that could increase your reach tenfold. Luckily, software and digital tools commonly offer a range of plans with different starting price points. When in doubt, contact the company for more details on pricing — they may be able to recommend the right plan for you or even offer you a new client special. Plus, you can always start with the lowest tier offered, then upgrade when you need.
- Is it volunteer-friendly? Odds are, you’ll collaborate with volunteers and other staff to use your advocacy tech to its fullest extent; the user experience of your tools can either streamline or disrupt this collaboration. Look for tools that can offer strong support for a growing base of users on the platform, and consider the quality of the help center or customer support articles that can help you and your team navigate any challenges that arise.
Try Impactive: The All-In-One Advocacy Tech Platform
Impactive is an all-in-one advocacy tech platform that provides outreach, engagement, and supporter management tools. Designed specifically to build relationships between advocacy organizations and supporters, our solutions can help you grow your supporter network, send messages with a nearly 100% open rate, and increase supporter engagement. In fact, some of our advocacy partners have even used Impactive to drive a 40% boost in volunteer shifts!
Advocacy tech can make your programming more efficient, expand your audience, and ultimately multiply the impact of your organization. For more information on advocacy organizing, visit our blog posts here.