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3 Ways Custom Convio Solutions Create Valuable Web Platform for JDRF

WebDriven has worked closely with Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) over the last four years to upgrade and expand the web presence for the Government Relations (GR) group.

At the heart of GR's management of engaged advocates is Convio, a leading non-profit donor management & CRM application.  Convio serves as their primary database to manage the data of the many thousands of individuals who support the advocacy initiatives of JDRF. Through regular email communications, calls to action and custom web & social media applications JDRF maintains contact and engages its audience.

WebDriven has been able to integrate the Convio data with six different applications in order to facilitate information flow and to maintain a primary “master” database. And all the applications utilize core Convio services in the background.

Here are three ways custom Convio integration has helped boost JDRF's advocate recruitment:

1) Registration can be extended to all web properties in a modular fashion.

A primary interface between the Government Relations applications and Convio is the basic registration module which each application uses for gathering and processing new advocate information. One of the primary reasons for contests and sharing stories through applications like Spread the Word is to a) generate interest in JDRF and b) ultimately, to encourage more people to become advocates.

Now, registration is a widget which can be extended to any web property or application.

2) Create a service for your advocates while keeping users on your site.

Once an advocate completes their registration, WebDriven passes the registration information to Convio and then provides a customizable thank you message to the user, all without the user leaving the GR site.

While passing the information we also use the Convio API to check for the email at Convio to avoid creating a duplicate and we check to make sure all required information has been provided.  And perhaps as important for the advocate, we can also prefill a form if they are returning but neglected to complete the information from an earlier time -- or -- automatically log them into web applications that they have opted into.

 3) Create 'easy' buttons for common Convio functions without requiring users to login to Convio.

One application actually simplifies the top five functions for a group of 150 leaders in order for them to search their groups, send emails and update advocate information. We call these the “easy buttons” after the Staples marketing effort. The goal was to follow the 80/20 rule and make it easy for them to do the most common tasks with just a few clicks.

The application has met rave reviews and utilization is up considerably.

Summary

Tight integration with a donor management or CRM application -- like Convio -- may not be possible in every situation. Whenever possible, though, steps should be taken to minimize user experience (UX) disruption caused by a) frequent linking in to and out of these applications, b) little or no central login capabillity for registration, among others.

Organizations of all sizes increasingly rely on Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications for core functions like customer or donor management, business intelligence (BI) and eCommerce just to name a few.

While many providers are building robust options for integration, many still offer few options without costly programming through their professional services arm.  Regardless of the available options, every organization should have a focused approach to balancing SaaS features with usability to help create more of a win-win situation for everyone.

WebDriven Work:

Check out Spread the Word
Check out Tell Your Story

D.J. Smith is Co-Founder & Senior Principal at WebDriven. A 15-plus year veteran of the Internet, he still remembers - albeit not too fondly -- how to setup a gopher site.

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