This post was originally published on Firefly Partner’s blog, and is being shared with their permission.

If the title of this blog post resonates with you, you have lots of company.
Most nonprofit organizations have a degree of dissatisfaction with their online engagement tool – primarily because there is no perfect platform.  Advocacy, email marketing, events, fundraising, eCommerce, and CRM are all fairly standard components of an online engagement program at most organizations.  These elements are really critical to the success and core functions of the modern nonprofit.  You just want to provide a great experience for your supporters and use systems that are easy to manage by accidental techies.  Seems easy enough, right?

The struggle is real.
Every week without fail, our team at Firefly Partners hears stories of pain and misery from nonprofit staff:

  • Our tool can’t ____________.
  • System __________ is hard to use.
  • We want to do ________ but our platform won’t scale.

Sometimes the fix is pretty easy (you need training).  Sometimes the fix is a little bigger (here’s a plug in that adds the functionality you want).  And sometimes, the fix is a big magilla (you should evaluate your requirements and plan to migrate to a new system).

Firefly has your back.
As someone who has helped many nonprofit organizations evaluate their current online engagement tools, select new systems and move into them, I can tell you that projects like this have a somewhat deserved reputation for being a giant pain.  That said, Firefly has developed a stellar reputation for serving as true advocates for our clients over the past eight years.  We’ve got no skin in the game other than making sure that you use the right tool for your specific functional needs, budget and tech-savviness.

We live in a time of continual innovation.
This is great for nonprofits because technology can be used to build just about anything you can dream up.  That’s the good news.  On the flip side, the ‘let’s build all the custom things’ environment can be quite challenging to navigate.  Lots of competition between a mix of established and new players in the nonprofit market combined with an ever-evolving landscape make it difficult to know what the best fit is for your unique online goals.  Adding to the pressure – making the wrong decision can have a huge impact on your organization (and maybe your career).

Unbiased advice is hard to find.
That’s why we took all of our sweet, experiential goodness and put it into our new free publication:  The Nonprofit Guide to Online Engagement Tools.  Firefly gives you a high-level look at six systems:

  • Charity Engine
  • Engaging Networks
  • EveryAction
  • Luminate Online
  • NeonCRM
  • Salsa

We focused on these platforms because they provide a unique range of cost, time in the marketplace, and sophistication.  If you are starting to look around the marketplace, our Guide does some of the initial legwork for you by providing an overview of each toolset, comments from end users, and ratings for areas of functionality that most nonprofit organizations need.

We’ll be posting more about our guide over the next few months, so check back for strategic guidance and tips.  In the meantime, grab your free copy and tell your friends to get theirs too.

Planning a move?  We can help reduce your risk and lead you through a successful migration project.  Get in touch.