Registrants can indicate their preference of Web site content, including ASPCA news articles, advocacy alerts and information on an assortment of topics such as animal poison control, legislation and adoption, to name a few. They also can indicate their preference to receive e-mail communications, such as fundraising appeals and a weekly newsletter, or to join its Advocacy Brigade. Members of the Advocacy Brigade receive special e-mail bulletins on how they can help lobby for animal welfare. Advocacy Alerts are geography-specific and notify recipients of upcoming animal welfare initiatives on state ballots.
When a registrant returns to the site, the nonprofit uses this data to greet supporters by name and displays content based on an individual's interests, such as an article on animal behavior.
"We really get to understand what the members and donors are looking for from us as an organization, and we get to show exactly what we're doing with their donor dollars," says Sullivan.
Registrants also can view and update their personal profiles online. This information is housed in an online database that helps the ASPCA elevate its donor demographic information, and gives it the ability to target messages to supporters based on their interests, according to Sullivan. It also allows the nonprofit to take advantage of cross-marketing opportunities. For example, the development team can target advocates and try to convert them to donors, while the advocacy group tries to spur donors to take legislative action.
To date, the organization has 360,000 registered users, who represent donors, advocates, animal professionals and people who like hearing from the organization, but haven't chosen to support it financially or legislatively. This last group of registrants, according to Sullivan, are considered warm prospects for its acquisition programs.
Getting Personal and Relevant
Aside from an e-mail address, the most valuable piece of information the ASPCA collects about its registrants is pet-parent status. Sullivan explains: "At the ASPCA, you're not a pet owner, you're a pet parent. If you share your life with a pet, you realize that you don't own them, they own you." Knowing a constituent's pet-parent status helps the ASPCA keep its supporters engaged with its organization.