Purple Vision Salesforce Services

Getting ready for the Salesforce World Tour London

Thousands of people who use Salesforce – or are thinking about using it – will descend on the ExCel Arena in London on 21 May 2015 for the Salesforce World Tour London.  

We’ll be there.  Will you?

It’s free to attend, and we would like to encourage all our clients and friends – and everyone interested in non profit tech, the cloud and being inspired – to join us.   You do need to register though, so get busy with that via this link, then read on for how to make the most of your day.

Link to register

While much of what happens at World Tour is focused on all users (and there are lots of them globally!), there are a couple of sessions specifically for non-profits where our sectors experiences will have a chance to shine.

What happens in ‘for profit’ often takes a few years to trickle down to non-profit thinking.  This is your chance to see what is already in use in retail, science, business and life for other Salesforce users.  What will the next non-profit trend be?  What could you use today to support your charity? See for yourself rather than following others head start!

How could marketing cloud work for you – automation, social monitoring?  What about charities dependent on commissioning relationships – what are businesses that track sales leads and relationships up to that you could apply?

There are a number of sessions in the breakouts, and several in the success zone, that will be really handy to check out for charities.  And if you’re interested in the code behind the customer interface, the developer zone gives you a chance to get hands-on and see for yourself how some of it works.

5 reasons we’re excited to be going to World Tour London (Infographic)

As a consultancy that supports non-profits, we’re closely in tune with what our partners at Salesforce Foundation are thinking, creating and doing.  At this year’s London World Tour, they are launching a new product for non-profits, NGO Connect (and one for education, too – Advancement Connect).  These apps that sit on the Salesforce platform are especially designed with their audience in mind.

NEW: NGO Connect

We’re excited about NGO Connect for lots of reasons.  We’ve already been to Seattle for enablement training in the new service and are proud to be one of the first partners selected to work with the Foundation to implement the solution in the UK and Europe

NGO Connect offers exciting developments for larger fundraising organisations.  Building on the basics of the non-profit starter pack, this is a high tech solution for organisations with complex requirements.

From managing products, volunteers and events to running excellent online fundraising, integration, and contact and relationship management, NGO Connect covers it all.  Integrating with a range of third party tools – social, mobile, digital – the tool offers some game-changing potential for a truly 360 degree view of all contacts.

The World Tour will introduce RSPCA as NGO Connect early adopters, and share news on the set up and benefits for them.   It’s going to be an exciting presentation.  We’ll all be there.

As implementation partners for NGO Connect, we’ll also be on hand to answer questions after the event – check out our website for events where you can find out more, too.

What to see

We’ll be up front about this, there are way too many sessions for you to get to them all.  So it’s best to have a plan and have had a look at the options before you go.

Steve (the Purple Vision boss)  was lucky enough to go to Dreamforce in San Francisco last year – which is *the* big annual Salesforce event to go to.  It’s huge.  It was, he said,  *awesome*, with lots going on, and the only way to get the most from it was to have a bit of plan.

Since World Tour London is a bit like mini-Dreamforce-on-your-doorstep, we think a plan is a great idea.  Our suggestion for making the most of the day as a non profit visitor goes something like this:

  • If you’re up with the lark and able to get across London for an early start, the first non profit session is from 08.30 – 09.10, and is a panel chat looking at some of the problems non profits are facing that are driving the need for change.
  • Another one if you’re here early – check out one of the Success Zone talks – there’s one at 09.30 on Top Tips for Better Adoption.  If you are worried about how to get your staff team on board with a new CRM project or are thinking about a switch and staff adoption is a concern, helpful advice can be found in this session.
  • Go to the Plenary Session in the morning – we don’t know who the guest speakers are, but in San Fran they got Hillary Clinton, The Beach Boys and Will.i.am.  I’ve got high hopes of a big name. Whether those hopes are grounded or not only time will tell, but outside of that, this is usually inspiring and packed with bits of knowledge and news and a lot of razzmatazz.  If you can’t get up and into London super early, start with this session.
  • Use lunch to have a wander around the Cloud Expo and visit the Salesforce Foundation campus (where all the non profit team are) –  if you tell us you are coming* we’ll met you and give you a quick tour of what we think are some of the highlights.   If you’re not up with the lark or can only commit a half day to attending – come for lunch onwards.
  • There’s a Salesforce Foundation session in the afternoon, billed as the launch of NGO Connect for charities and Advancement Connect for Education –  interesting to hear about these ‘game changing’ products for the platform.
  • Drop into one of the breakout sessions after this – there are a few to choose from that will be helpful for non profits, or offer you some personal inspiration.
  • Stay for a drink – there’s a reception in the Expo at the end of the day.  Stop by and have a drink with us and tell us what you learned today.

Next steps

Snowgoose, Just Giving and Salesforce

What Napoleon’s height teaches us about Online Fundraising (Snow Goose)

Everyone knows that Napoleon was short.

Except…he wasn’t. He was average for the time, around 5’7″.

How did we get it so wrong? Well, turns out in French inches, he was 5’2″, and due to our inability to measure him, we just assumed he was short. This mistake has been passed down through generations, been used to explain his motivation, and even helped coin the ‘Napoleon Syndrome’ for short people supposedly trying to compensate. For such a simple measurement mistake, this has had some pretty big ramifications.

Our failure to accurately measure Napoleon is understandable. Even today it’s considered impolite to rush up to a man holding a measuring stick. Even on the third date…

What do we fail to measure in the Fundraising world that we should be measuring? Today’s topic is online fundraising, and it’s incredibly difficult to measure, especially when it comes in through multiple channels.

A common story among charities goes something like this. They started off with JustGiving, were lured by the lower fees of Virgin Money Giving, only to try even cheaper BT MyDonate, before trying EveryDay Hero or returning to JustGiving for the features.

Donations were flowing through three or four online fundraising systems, not to mention a CAF Donate page and a few legacy Paypal recurring donations set-up by last year’s fundraising assistant.

In this situation, you’re getting the money, but what you’re not getting is the data.

At least not in a system you can measure. This means that you can’t answer the following questions, at least not without spending a day mushing files together in Excel:

  • Who are our top 10 fundraisers? (because we want to host a dinner for them)
  • Who raised the most money last year but didn’t raise anything this year? (we might want to ask why)
  • Who has donated to at least three different fundraisers? (because they might be next year’s superstar fundraiser)
  • What are last year’s top 100 donors? (because we might want to send them a handwritten card)

We’re excited to let you in on a secret.

You can now answer these questions, even if you use every different fundraising system on the planet.

Snow Goose is a charity focused application that aggregates all of your fundraising data onto one platform. It’s based on Salesforce, so you also get all the features that come with Salesforce.

With Snow Goose, you can smoothly import data from multiple platforms and report on standardized data.

Snow Goose in action is straightforward for both the fundraiser and the rest of the staff.

Fundraisers mainly click Next half a dozen times as they monitor the import process and check for any contacts that are flagged as having conflicting data. Thousands of donors, sponsored and voluntary and donations can be imported in minutes, with duplication handled in the background.

And the rest of the staff see donations against both the eventer and the donor. Snow Goose beautifully handles this dual credit and accepts data from multiple online fundraising platform.

Which brings us back to Napoleon and his not-so-short height.

  • What mistakes are you making about your Fundraising data because you can’t measure it?
  • What impact is this having on next year’s strategy and fundraising targets?
  • Could you communicate with your donors but don’t because they aren’t in your database?

Without measuring your online fundraising across multiple channels, you can’t even know what you don’t know!

Whether Snow Goose helps Salesforce in its challenge to Blackbaud, only time will tell. But we think it’s a great addition to the Salesforce platform.

It plays nice with the old and new Non-Profit Starter Pack, as well as roundCause/ NGO Connect, which is sponsored by the Salesforce Foundation and coming to the UK soon.

Snow Goose is priced so that it’s accessible to almost any sized charity, with the price ranging from 0.7% of donation value for smaller charities, to 0.1% of donation value for the very largest.

A team of partners helps charities implement Snow Goose and optimize the data for increased fundraising and we’re delighted to have Purple Vision are one of these implementation parters

If you’d  like to know how Snow Goose can help you raise your fundraising targets, give Purple Vision a call!

More info


Is your website mobile friendly?


Odd updates about how Google calculate algorithms for search pass by us every now and then. Last year there was a lot of chat about Pandas.  Turns out, it wasn’t a new campaign from WFF. And Penguins – sadly not a chocolatey biscuit treat.  These were big changes in how Google do the things they do.  Unless you’re a super-geek, there’s very little chance of keeping up with it all, and understanding all of the elements involved in search ranking as there are thousands of them. Carry on doing your best, make the changes you can.  Have a rolling development programme, keep plugging away.   You’ll get there.

But this one is important

From April 21, Google have told us they will be changing their algorithm to include a mobile search that will detect if a site is mobile friendly.  That means, if content will render properly on mobile devices – smartphones and tablet pc’s.  Is it responsive?

And if it doesn’t?  Well, you won’t disappear from search altogether and overnight, but your rankings will be harmed, and sites which have content similar to you, but which are mobile optimised, will appear higher than yours.

Why you need to address this

  1. The size of the opportunity to market – there are more than double the quantity mobile phones in the UK than there are people. While we think this is a bonkers number it’s easy to see how you can get to that point – wave your hand if you have two phones –one for home, one for work?  Yep that’s how that number gets so high.  And just think of the opportunities to interact with potential donors.
  2. Fundraising – the Give as you Live Digital Donor Review gives us a host of compelling reasons to make sure we’re mobile – 9/10 mobile searches result in an action – eg a store visit, purchase or donation; mobile commerce grew by 300% between 2011 and 2012; in 2013, they predicted that by 2015 (this year) mobile use would exceed desktop usage – and they leave us with a challenge too as they point out that 83% of UK charities don’t have a mobile strategy. That’s a lot of potential fundraising to be done, right there.
  3. Usability – hands up if you’ve clicked off a site you can’t see or use properly. Our patience is wafer thin these days, and as consumers – and potential donors – we don’t wait around anymore.  You have to feed us what we need, when we want it!
  4. Competition – we all like to think our sites are unique and provide specialist exclusive information for our stakeholders. But we’d be naïve if we didn’t recognise that all of us are in a position where someone else’s site could provide at least some of the information we provide.  All of us are savvier about keywords, content and as a result competition is strong. If you have spent any time or money on getting your site to the top of the pile, it would be a shame to waste it now.

What you can do about this now

If you are not sure your site is friendly or not, you can take the Google test – simply enter your URL and Google will show you what it sees and helpfully point out any bugs it might have found that prevent elements of your site being mobile visible.

Do the test

Now what?

So now you’ll know, at least.  If your site is friendly, good for you.  For many of us through, t won’t be as simple to address the result as a few quick clicks in the code behind the scenes to correct any minor tweaks.

For many, if the site doesn’t pass muster, it will mean a review of the content management system you are using.

There are two ways to do this

  • Expensive re-coding to manipulate the site to be mobile friendly, using your existing CMS.
  • A review of your CMS provision and how it fits with your digital vision for the future

It’s this latter opportunity that we’d like to strongly recommend that you consider.

If your site isn’t mobile optimised, chances are you also can’t integrate your email marketing and CRM data with it and are working with data silos and missing real opportunities to generate more funds, improve retention, and reduce customer frustration.  Typically, your job will also be a little bit more stressful as a result, too.

A Digital Signposting review will review your strategy and provide some recommendations on the tools that will work well for you, improve integration, functionality and efficiency – it is possible to achieve all three!- and address your digital future, too.

Find out more: http://purple-vision.com/services/digital-services/  – or you can call Keith via 0845 458 0250 – he’s definitely friendly, often mobile and is most certainly responsive.



Did you know the average direct debit is £20 per month ?


Earlier this week BACS, the organisation behind Direct Debits, put out figures which on headline examination seem to show that the average gift given to charities by this medium is… *drum roll please* … £20.

We had to do the maths to believe it

£20! As direct debit giving is the standard regular giving method, this should mean an average monthly amount of £20. To say I was gob-smacked is an understatement.

We had to white-board it out in the office to check that £1.2bn over 60m donations equated to… £20. And it did.

Is this direct debit gift really average?

I like to think of myself as a fairly generous charity donor, and I like direct debit. But the most I give to one of the 12 charities I commit to is £15, and that was through a self upgrade process over the years, as I decided to give more as my income went up (and I used to work there, and saw first hand how the money is spent – which helps).

The lowest is £2, and the average is £7. Nowhere near the £20 per month BACS indicate. And the many charities I have worked for have all aimed for a critical mass of small donations, but from a large pool of people, to enable them to work towards their mission.

Not one started with an ask of £20. Or £10. But in the main £2, £3 or £5.

Battersea Dogs and Cats Home is a great example of how a concerted push from a small start can change the income profile of an organisation, taking it from deficit to surplus in less than 5 years.

Start small and build up

I was somewhat relieved then to read Joe Saxton’s latest blog on the matter, which argued for a low starting point, and indeed seemed to defend that as a worthwhile donation over time.

With good and timely impact reporting the charity can ask for more, or if you’re strange like me, the donor may decide to upgrade themselves. Either way, the £2 is the starting point, the relationship is made, and the onus, rightly, is on the charity to either do the great things promised with the £2 and/or show what could be done with more – and have a programme to upgrade and develop.

I look forward to the next charity that approaches me for £2 a month, and tells me what it can achieve, as they might get it. Anyone who asks for £20 is likely to get an ‘on yer bike’ response in the first instance. But perhaps I’m not as generous as I thought. The direct debit figures certainly imply that.

What do you think?

What do you think? What is the best ask for direct debit giving?  A low starting point to build on, or a higher point that aims to be more impactful from the off?

At what point would you start giving to a charity, or at what point would you start to pay attention?  Let us know in the comments below …