Why Best in Breed is Worst in Class
In a word: disconnection.
We've seen a lot of application diagrams and flowcharts from our clients with a database here and an event tool there. Most of them, sadly, don't have hard lines of connection - mostly just dotted lines suggesting data maybe kinda goes back and forth. Maybe.
What does that mean for advancement and engagement teams?
First, engagement modeling becomes almost impossible because the first step is a massive data management requirement. Now, we at QuadWrangle have a rich master data management tool built right into QuadHub that uses machine learning to blend your disparate data sources, but very few orgs even have that. That means there's a lot of data massaging that has to happen and, from hundreds of discussions, the more common result is that teams are forced to "kill" data feeds - just ignore the data from certain apps altogether because to do anything else is cost and bandwidth prohibitive.
Secondly, when an alum buys a ticket on your event app and then navigates to your giving page, these disparate tools aren't helping or informing each other. Forget trying to have a native giving appeal on an event registration page. There are dozens of interactions between apps that simply aren't occurring when they aren't natively related.
Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, the alum and donor experience is stilted. It's inconsistent. If I head to a consumer website - Amazon, Spotify, Nike - every time I click the experience is getting more built around me and my interests with absolute clarity on where I've been and a pretty darn good guess about where I might want to go. When apps are disparate, that kind of consumer experience just isn't possible. Frankly, half the time the web pages of all these apps across one alumni "main" website don't even look the same.
That isn't to say that engagement platforms shouldn't strive to meet and even exceed the functional excellence of those narrowly focused apps, but it's a certainty that app disparity is holding you back from:
- A strong, modern alumni experience
- Rich engagement insights
- Being able to deliver a personalized experience to alumni and donors
- Increasing online giving
We'll continue to press forward with our holistic engagement suite here at QuadWrangle with features that are best in breed and a platform that truly stands in its own class. Want to talk more about the balance between specific apps and a platform approach to engagement?