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Engaging alumni with online chapter/club communities

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Learn how to empower chapter/club alumni volunteers to use online tools and social networks, and how new technologies are shaping your alumni's online expectations.

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Engaging alumni with online chapter/club communities

  1. 1. Engaging Your Alumni to Build Their Own OnlineChapter/Club Communities2010 CASE District I ConferenceJanuary 28, 2010Zach Wheat, Director of Interactive MediaUniversity of Virginiazjw6b@eservices.virginia.eduKathryn Hall, Technical Product SpecialistBlackbaudkathryn.hall@blackbaud.com
  2. 2. Session Summary and Key Take-Aways Understand How Web 2.0 Technologies are Forming Your Alumni’s Online Expectations Learn How to Empower Chapter/Club Alumni Volunteers to Use Online Tools to Build Social Networks and Meet these Expectations Understand How Institutions like University of Virginia and University of Chicago are Benefiting from a More Engaged Alumni through Chapter/Club Online CommunitiesPage #2 © 2010 Blackbaud
  3. 3. Session Agenda History of Alumni Online Engagement Building Successful Online Chapter/Club Communities Case Study #1: University of Chicago Case Study #2: University of VirginiaPage #3 © 2010 Blackbaud
  4. 4. HISTORY OF ALUMNI ONLINE ENGAGEMENTPage #4 © 2010 Blackbaud
  5. 5. Alumni Online Engagement Evolution Online Alumni Online Directories Centers Social NetworksPage #5 © 2010 Blackbaud
  6. 6. Early Technologies: Online Directories • Basic – No Interactivity Level of • Web 1.0 Technology Engagement • One-Way Communications • Extension of Offline Fundraising Directory Goals and • No Fundraising ROI Objectives or Measured ROI Content • Institution-Only Content Sources and • Limited Data Collection DataPage #6 © 2010 Blackbaud
  7. 7. More Engagement: Alumni Centers • Some Interactivity, i.e., Level of Class Notes Engagement • Two-Way Communications Fundraising • Measured ROI, i.e., % Goals and of Email Address ROI • Online Donations • Alumni-Generated Content Content Sources and • Profile and Interest Data ManagementPage #7 © 2010 Blackbaud
  8. 8. Latest Advancement: Online Social Networks • High-level Engagement Level of • Alum-to-Alum Engagement Communications • Specific Online Fundraising Fundraising Programs Goals and • Peer-to-Peer ROI Fundraising • Personalized and Content Subscribed Content Sources and • Social Network Data Collected DataPage #8 © 2010 Blackbaud
  9. 9. BUILDING SUCCESSFUL ONLINE CHAPTER/CLUB COMMUNITIESPage #9 © 2010 Blackbaud
  10. 10. Launching a Successful Chapter/Club Online Network Design Execute Measure Define The The Right and Results Right Online Provide and Re- Project Solution Support EvaluatePage #10 © 2010 Blackbaud
  11. 11. Define The Right Project Set Clear Project Define Measurable Survey Your Goals Objectives Alumni’s Needs • Provide • Match Objectives to • How They Interact Chapter/Club Project Goals with Other Alum Volunteers with • All Objectives Must • What Services They New Interactive be Measured and Want from the Online Tools Tracked UniversityPage #11 © 2010 Blackbaud
  12. 12. Sample Project Objectives Increase Alumni Email Addresses • Target Workable Email Addresses for Over 50% of All Alumni Increase Alumni Online Activity • Target to Increase Overall Alumni Web Traffic by 100% Minimize Budget Impact • Cover Ongoing Costs with Membership and Event Registration Revenue Deliver More Relevant Information • Deliver Monthly Chapter/Club-Specific Communications to 100% of All Alumni Center MembersPage #12 © 2010 Blackbaud
  13. 13. Design The Right Online Solution Understand Your Select the Right Design for the Marketplace Technology Right Features • Comparable • Select a Proven • Match Alumni Institution Websites Vendor or Expectations and • Other “Dot Com” Developer Survey Results Sites • Future-Proof Your • Align Features to Institution Meeting ObjectivesPage #13 © 2010 Blackbaud
  14. 14. Key Online Technology Features Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) • Allows University Staff to Control Access to Key Features and Data for Chapter/Club Users Chapter / Club Website Management (CMS) • Provides Easy Tools for Alum Volunteers to Maintain Up-to-Date Information about Chapter/Club online Email Design and Delivery • Gives Simple Tools and Email Design Templates to Chapter/Club Volunteers to Communicate to Registered Members Events Registrations and Calendaring • Allows Alumni to Submit New Event, Search Existing Events and Register and Pay for Attending Selected EventsPage #14 © 2010 Blackbaud
  15. 15. Execute and Provide Support Staff Project Invest in Staff and Provide Ongoing Appropriately Alumni Training Support to Alumni • Use Combination of • Invest in Expert • Train Alumni-facing Vendor and Staff Training with Core Staff on Technology Resources Team • Offer On-call • Hire as Necessary • Train New Support for to Support Project Chapter/Club Users Chapter/Club UsersPage #15 © 2010 Blackbaud
  16. 16. Measure Results and Re- Evaluate Periodically Report Results Re-evaluate Needs Measure • Share Results with and Technologies • Create Set of Entire Team and • Understand that Recurring Report across Institution Technology Always • Measure Key Stats • Use Results to Changes against Original Prove ROI Case to • Re-evaluate Every Project Objectives Executives 3-5 YearsPage #16 © 2010 Blackbaud
  17. 17. CASE STUDY: UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGOPage #17 © 2010 Blackbaud
  18. 18. University of Chicago Alumni Center Project Challenge • The University of Chicago wanted to design a more engaging and modern online Alumni Center. Solution • The University of Chicago launched the Alumni and Friends website including the alumni association pages and alumni directory. The sleek, http://alumniandfriends.uchicago.edu roomy design is paired with Launched May 29, 2009 robust Blackbaud functionality to create a break-through Alumni application.Page #18 © 2010 Blackbaud
  19. 19. Alumni Engagement Options Events • Alumni Can Search for Upcoming Events and Submit New Events Career Resources • Alumni Can Post Jobs and Exchange Career Advice Online Giving • Alumni Can Support the University and See How Their Donations are Being Used Volunteer • Alumni Can Give Back Their Time and Skills to the Alumni CommunityPage #19 © 2010 Blackbaud
  20. 20. Different Club and Group Networks College Classes & Schools • University Pre-Populated the Network with Each Graduating Class and Division/School Regional and International • Staff Created Chapter Network Sites across Each Region in the US and Internationally Special Interest Groups • Staff also Created a Catch-all Network Type for Special Interests for Specialty ClubsPage #20 © 2010 Blackbaud
  21. 21. Connecting Alumni to Networks Search Networks • Search Feature Allows Alumni to Look Up Networks by a Variety of Descriptors Create New Networks • Enterprising Alumni can Create New Networks, such as New Region or Special Interest for Staff Approval Network Attributes • Individual Networks are Defined by a Variety of Characteristics which are Stored in the DatabasePage #21 © 2010 Blackbaud
  22. 22. Alumni Network Engagement Network Membership • Links Alum to Specific Networks within the Database Local Event Calendar • Tools Allow Chapter/Club Volunteers to Present Events and Capture, if Requested, Online Registrations Other Localized Content • Tools Allow for the Creation of Local News Articles and Feedback on Message BoardsPage #22 © 2010 Blackbaud
  23. 23. Data Maintenance and Integrity Single Sign On • Authenticate Online Users between Alumni Websites and The University of Chicago’s CNET ID system Data Migration • Migrated of Over 145,000 Profile Records from Alumni Database Data Integration • Future Project to Integrate Information Collected Online to University DatabasesPage #23 © 2010 Blackbaud
  24. 24. CASE STUDY: UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIAPage #24 © 2010 Blackbaud
  25. 25. University of Virginia Project Timeline 2005 2005 2006 2007+ Define The Design the Execute and Measure Right Project Right Online Provide Results and • Determine Solution Support Re-Evaluate Requirements • Procure New • Launch First • Track and Report through Extensive System - Phase of Sites Progress of Research Blackbaud Sphere • Train Staff and Solution • Hired Staff VolunteersPage #25 © 2010 Blackbaud
  26. 26. Defining the Right Project Challenge • The University suffered from a mish-mash of websites and technologies and needed to uniformly create a vibrant engagement operation with more event participation and alumni interactions. Solution • The University of Virginia uses the Blackbaud Sphere platform as a single solution http://uvaclubs.virginia.edu to create a modern, attractive http://hoosonline.virginia.edu alumni website that enables a single online experience for all types of online interactions by alumni.Page #26 © 2010 Blackbaud
  27. 27. Designing the Right Online Solution Websites to Connect Alumni • Website with online forms, engaging content and community-building tools • Tools to manage event registrations and calendars Data Maintenance • Centralized login for all alumni to link to Career and Research Service, Affinity Circles, and Vmail • This is a primary way for an alumni to update their contact information; data integration was key Email Communications • A strong email system with accurate addresses gives them the ability to reach alumni very quickly • Provides the capabilities to ensure targeted and relevant messagingPage #27 © 2010 Blackbaud
  28. 28. Execute and Provide SupportPrimary Staff Users • Six Full-time Staff • Manager, Data Specialist, Email Marketer, Website Designer, Form Manager, Advanced Programmer, and TrainerChapter and Club Alumni Users • Must Make it Easy for Volunteers to be Successful • Unsuccessful with Formal Training Program; Transitioned to Consultative One-on-One ApproachOther Staff Users • Provided Training to Other Staff who Interact with Alumni • An Additional 190 Staff have Access to System • Two Additional Email Communication Specialists within Alumni Staff • Regional Engagement OfficersPage #28 © 2010 Blackbaud
  29. 29. Chapter/Club Online Tools Chapter/Club Website • Template Allows for the Creation of Forms, Photos, RSS News Feed and Event Calendars Access Controls • Sites can be Managed Either by Alumni Volunteers or Supported by Trained Staff with Controlled Access Email Communications • Staff Work with Alumni Volunteers to Send Periodic and Targeted http://uvaclubs.virginia.edu eNewsletter Communications, while Updating Member Data Directly OnlinePage #29 © 2010 Blackbaud
  30. 30. Measuring and Reporting Results Summary of Results • 50% Workable Email Addresses: 200,000 Alumni, Started with 35K Email Addresses, Now Have 110K Email Addresses • Increase Online Interactions: Launched Over 150 Club/Chapter Websites • Increase Online Fundraising: 220 Active Donation Forms Raising $3.5M Annually • More Targeted Communications: Sending 10M Targeted Emails Annually Using 130+ Campaigns2007 Statistics 2008 Statistics 2009 Statistics• 5,600 event • 14,000 event • 18,500 event registrations registrations registrations• 6.3 million emails • 5.9 million emails • 10.4 million emails• 2,100 online donations • 4,500 online donations • 11,200 online • 144% increase in donations funds received • 136% increase in funds receivedPage #30 © 2010 Blackbaud
  31. 31. Technology Re-Evaluation and Investment Key Infrastructure is in Place and Now Very Usable Club Sites are Nearly 100% Volunteer Driven, Creating Deeply Engaging Interactions with Alumni University Resources Now Concentrate on Creating New and More Modern Online Services New Fundraising Campaign Site: http://campaign.virginia.edu HoosOnline, Campaign for the University, HoosNetwork, Facebook/Linked In, and iPhone ApplicationsPage #31 © 2010 Blackbaud
  32. 32. Lessons Learned Do Not Design or • Include All Stakeholders from the Start Work in a Vacuum Invest in Intelligent • Create an Easy-to-Use System to Produce Forms, Design Up Front Websites and Email Yields Greater AdoptionControl Access to Key • Ensure Volunteers and Staff have Access to Only Systems and Data What They Need • Build Strong Relationships between Trainers and Invest in Training Chapter/Club Alumni Volunteers Measure and Report • Breed an Environment of Success to Build on Success Momentum and Ongoing InvestmentPage #32 © 2010 Blackbaud
  33. 33. Next Steps… Answering the Question:“Is an Engaged Alum More Likely to Give Money?” • Integrating Alumni Activities and Donor Information Data Integration is • Online Activities with Profile Information Exchanged Important between University Databases Data Collection Difficult in • 28 Foundations and 100’s of Online Giving Forms Decentralized • CRM Tracking and Segmentation is the Key Environment • Over $3.5 Online in CY09 Early Results: • Beginning to Analyze Surveys in 2009 Correlating Available Data Event Registration to Online ActivitiesPage #33 © 2010 Blackbaud
  34. 34. Zach Wheat, Director of Interactive Media University of Virginia zjw6b@eservices.virginia.edu Kathryn Hall, Technical Product Specialist Blackbaud kathryn.hall@blackbaud.com QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS?Page #34 © 2010 Blackbaud

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