We know it’s been a while since you’ve heard from us here at CharityCAN, but that’s because we’ve had our heads down working on three new exciting features for you: Federal Corporation data, Obituary data, and a new and faster way to search our donation records.
We’ve added data from Corporations Canada on all federally registered corporations and their directors. This data includes information on not only privately held corporations but also not-for-profits, co-operatives and boards of trade from all across the country.
We think this data will be a boon to prospect researchers all across Canada, but especially those in smaller cities and towns looking for local business leaders. Altogether this data covers more than 1.1M corporations and almost 2M director positions and will be updated with more data monthly.
We’re already hard at work incorporating the new connections that this director information will provide into our relationship maps. We’re not quite there but the corporation data on its own was too exciting to keep back until the relationship maps were ready.
Obituaries have been on our users’ data wish lists for quite some time. We’ve finally been able to team up with our new friends at Canada Deceased List to offer obituary data from their ObitScan and Canada Bereavement Registry products. With their help we’ll be providing thousands of recent Canadian obituaries from public online sources every month.
Improved Donation Records Search
As our database of almost 15M Canadian donation records continues to grow, it has started to put enough of a strain on our database that we decided we needed to make things better. We found that certain searches were starting to take a few seconds to deliver results, and so it was time to speed things up.
We’ve completely rewritten our Donation Records search engine so that results are now consistently delivered within milliseconds of your query, no matter the complexity. We look forward to moving more of our searches to this new search engine in the future!
More On The Way
As I mentioned earlier, work continues on getting these new datasets into our prospect profiles. For the moment both datasets are searchable on their own or through our Integrated Search. Stay tuned for more developments, and as always, contact us if you’d like to see these new features in action.
We all know how important relationship mapping is to philanthropic prospect research. However, not all relationship mapping is created equal.
There are two main kinds of relationship mapping:
- Relationship mapping done with internal data
- Relationship mapping done with external data
Relationship mapping done with internal data uses information you know about your donors and prospects. Think creating a family tree that links a current donor with a prospect who know is his or her niece.
Relationship mapping done with external data uses information from outside your organization to show you how people are connected. Think a graph showing you how a prospect is connected to other people of interest based on the corporate boards your prospect sits on.
Now that we’ve got that covered, here’s the good news: you can combine both types of relationship mapping using Custom Relationship Mapping in CharityCAN. This feature opens up CharityCAN’s relationship data and mapping functionality and allows you to create and edit maps. You can define family, personal, and professional relationships by type and length and CharityCAN will automatically pull in everything we know about the people in your custom map.
Click here for a how-to guide on Custom Relationship Maps!
Another great benefit about Custom Relationship Mapping is the ability to associate people with your organization. Let’s say your organization has a well connected donor or volunteer and you want to use his or connections while you are qualifying prospects. Or you are creating a fundraising committee and you want to reveal all of their connections in CharityCAN like you can with your Board members. All you need to do is create a custom relationship map and link these people to your organization. Then, whenever you are looking at a profile in CharityCAN, whether it is an individual, a company or a foundation, CharityCAN will use that person’s connections as though they are a current or historical board member and show if you are connected to your prospect.
If you have any questions or would like a quick walk-through of this feature please email us at email@example.com!
Donor screening and wealth screening are sometimes used interchangeably in fundraising. Since wealth screening is almost always a component of donor screening, this misunderstanding is understandable. Nevertheless, it is important to understand the limitations of pure wealth screening when compared to full donor screening. Let’s look a closer look at both types of screening.
Wealth Screening Overview
Wealth screening is solely concerned with wealth. Here are some of the things wealth screening can tell you:
- Net worth
- Dwelling value
- Other assets and liabilities
Donor Screening Overview
Donor screening is also concerned with wealth and any quality donor screen will include the elements of wealth screening listed above. However, donor screening will also look for the following:
- Relationships and connections to your organization
- Past philanthropic gifts in general
- Past philanthropic gifts to similar causes and/or organizations
- Non-giving philanthropic engagement such as serving on the board of a charity
- Political giving
Capacity and Affinity
Where wealth screening and donor screening differ concerns capacity and affinity. Wealth screening tries to determine how much money a person has. Donor screening expands on wealth screening and looks at a person’s overall viability as a donor in addition to how much a person can give. Wealth screening focuses on capacity. Donor screening focuses on capacity and affinity.
Yes, it is critical to have an idea of a person’s capacity to give – this makes sure our gift asks are reasonable and accurate. However, we also need to know the person’s affinity for the cause or organization if we want to maximize our chances of success. Wealth screening helps determine the gift ask. Donor screening helps determine the gift ask and the likelihood of success.
Although sometimes they are confused due to their similarity, it is important to understand the differences between wealth screening and donor screening. If you are solely concerned with a person’s capacity to give, wealth screening is the exercise for you. If you are concerned with a person’s capacity to give and his or her connections to your organization and likelihood to give to your organization, donor screening makes the most sense.
If you’ve logged into CharityCAN recently, you’ll already know that we’ve been working on freshening up the site a little bit. In the past couple of months, we’ve given the site a new look, a new menu, a new place for news and now a new homepage. It’s all part of our software development efforts this year on streamlining the prospect research experience on CharityCAN.
It’s not a total re-imagination of our website – instead, it’s kind of like when you’ve lived somewhere for a while and feel nicely settled. And then you realize that maybe things would work better if that couch were just over there, and this chair was closer to that wall…
A New Menu
One of the first changes we made was to move our old menu from the side of the page up to the top, and rearranged our menu items to make it a little easier to find all of our most-used features. This may not seem like a big change, but it frees up a lot of screen real estate and makes things a lot nicer on tablet-sized devices.
A New Place for News
The next thing we did was move our news from the home page to a smaller widget that shows up on each CharityCAN page you visit. This way we can keep you informed of new changes and features no matter where you are in our application. It also freed up more space that let us create…
A New Home Page
With the extra real estate from our menu moving and our home page freed up, we were able to re-imagine a new experience for someone logging into CharityCAN for the first (or thousandth) time. We moved some of our most used features right to the home page so that you can use our integrated search and our donation records search as soon as you sign in.
We also chose to highlight something else we’ve been working on: donor recommendations based on our relationship maps. We choose a couple of donors to highlight based on their connections to your board of directors or their donations to similar charities. To view a larger list of recommendations, you can also visit your saved prospect pages to see who else you may already be connected to.
We hope you are enjoying the changes we’ve made so far, and there are more planned, so stay tuned!