An Inadequate System
Zoweh is a growing organization, but their previous CRM couldn’t keep up with their growth. They were using CiviCRM, a free, open-source platform. They’d simply outpaced it. “We knew that we were growing and we knew that we were going to continue to grow and that we had outgrown the old system. It didn’t give us that flexibility that we needed. It had a querying tool, but it wasn’t as sophisticated as what we currently have with Virtuous,” says Christopher Matthews, Digital Director.
Open source technology doesn’t come with a support team. “When there were any issues, it was up to us to go to the CiviCRM community to see if there might’ve been a patch for a bug or security updates. It was all dependent upon us,” says Christopher.
Before switching to Virtuous, the team at Zoweh was spending a lot of time and effort just to send email. They used GetResponse as their email platform, and moving data back and forth was onerous. “Our email platform was not integrated into our CRM,” says Christopher. “The team had to run queries in CiviCRM, export them, and import them into GetResponse just to send the email. It was a lot.”
It was time for Zoweh to find a CRM that supported their growth and helped them build donor relationships. “We needed more flexibility and we wanted to get off open source so that we had more technological stability,” says Christopher.
Zoweh chose Virtuous to be their growth partner.
How We Helped
Automation Saves Time
With Virtuous’ robust automation tools, Christopher and his team can connect with donors in new ways, without spending more time on tedious administrative tasks.
“The automation workflows in Virtuous Marketing have been spectacular. We didn’t have anything like that before we moved into Virtuous,” says Christopher. “It’s helped us get all of our systems and processes to the point where they’re working for us and not against us. That has saved us so much time.”
“The ability to create workflows easily has been very powerful,” he says. “We do a workflow for every event that we have.” Using the convenient Best Practices Templates in Virtuous, the team started with a Happy Birthday email automation, then a Wedding Anniversary email automation, before adding a New Donor Welcome Workflow.
The team at Zoweh also makes use of Virtuous’ Custom Collections feature to track and follow up with supporters who use their online store. “Anybody who purchases a resource paid or free from our online store goes into the Purchases Custom Collection,” Christopher explains. “Say somebody bought a book. We have a workflow that sends them a thank you email and a coupon code for purchasing another product from our store. That’s something that we could never do in Civi. That’s pretty easy to do in Virtuous now.”
These workflows and consistent communication have translated to giving and stronger supporter relationships.
Visibility, Flexibility, Reliability
Now, the team at Zoweh can easily access the data they need to connect with donors. “The flexibility of Virtuous’ query tool has probably been the number one game changer for us because in our old system, we weren’t able to dig down deep enough to get the data that we needed,” says Christopher.
Virtuous is committed to finding the best solutions for each customer. When choosing an online fundraising platform, the team at Zoweh chose Virtuous’ RaiseDonors. This allows them to give their donors greater autonomy while relieving even more administrative burden from the team. “We love RaiseDonors,” says Christopher. “The donation forms are very clean, simple, and well laid out. Just having a system where donors can log into their account and edit their recurring gifts themselves has been really beneficial so far.”
For Christopher, one of the key benefits of using Virtuous is knowing that it is reliable. “You can’t put a price on the stability of your systems,” he says. “That’s worth gold because if you’re in the middle of the end-of-year fundraising campaign and something breaks and there’s no one around to fix it, then you’re kind of stuck. We’ve had that happen before on our previous system, and it cost us.”
Partner, Not a Vendor
When the team at Zoweh has questions or runs into issues, they have someone to reach out to. Instead of looking for patches or trying to figure out everything on their own, as they had to on their previous system, they call on the Virtuous Customer Support team.
“The support is incredible,” says Christopher. “Absolutely, hands-down, the whole support team is just fabulous. They know the system in and out. Virtuous is not only our software provider but more of a partner.”
Christopher also appreciates that Virtuous isn’t a stagnant platform. Regular updates and new features ensure that Zoweh is always up to date with the technology they need. “Virtuous is always continually innovating,” he says. “It seems like Virtuous is always ahead of the technology curve, which keeps us ahead of the technology curve. We know that we’re not going to fall behind. We’re very happy. We’re Virtuous users for life.”