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Connecting the Data Dots

nonprofit data Nov 16, 2022

What do you see in the data? I love this question.

It leaves room for personal perspective and interpretation. It provides an opportunity to connect the dots.

We are constantly trying to make sense of and interpret what we see around us and then apply meaning based on our own personal experience. In other words, we connect the dots. The final picture that ends up taking shape in front of us may be different than what we thought it would be when we started, but we're always connecting the dots. Data is no different.

Take a shiny new fundraising prospect for an organization. To get to know them before fully engaging, we start with a little (or a lot depending on budget) research using the data available to us no matter how complete or incomplete it may be.

Based on this initial work we determine (another way to say interpret) whether a prospect should be in this tier or that pool. Or be assigned to this fundraiser or another fundraiser. Or be interested in this or that initiative.

We then start engaging with the prospect, connecting even more dots. With each step, the picture becomes clearer, more in focus.

Part of our work as nonprofit fundraising data pros is to work with a series of dots that need connecting until the full picture is right in front of us and we help our team get a yes to the request.

But it all starts with connecting the data dots and sharing what we see in the data by way of insights, implications, and interpretations.

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