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Mysamaris Services

Mysamaris offers a wide variety of services including:  website design and development, content management, custom data reporting and analysis, data integration, design, e-commerce configuration, e-constituent engagement, email campaigns, fundraising strategy and platform implementation, project management, SEO/SMO, website analytics, website quality assurance, and much more.

Data Integration

Your data is one of your most valuable assets, but if your organization is like most organizations, you have bits of it all over the place and the opportunity to learn from it is getting lost. We can help you get all of your mission critical data synched up and working for you. With a focus on quality assurance, we can help you integrate or migrate your data platforms into a cohesive 360 degree view of your constituents and their interactions with your organization so that you can make informed, strategic decisions.

Website Analytics

Tracking key website visitor metrics is essential to maintaining a successful website. Mysamaris will help you set up, configure, maintain and make sense out of your websites analytics platform. We will help you track conversion goals and constituent engagement pathway funnel reports so that you can see when, why and how people are interacting with your website.

GOOGLE ANALYTICS

Mysamaris retains certified Google Analytics staff who stay on top of the latest developments in the product and who can make sure you are getting the most useful information out of your web data.

E-Commerce Configuration

E-commerce platforms must provide your customers with quick, easy and logical systems to make purchases or payments online. They also include the capabilities to keep track of how, when and why your customers are making their transactions. Mysamaris can help you choose the right e-commerce platform for your organization and take them from concept to live site in no time.

Search Engine Optimization

SEO is a process that starts in the planning phase and goes on long after your site has launched. Steadily improving your organic search rankings is both an art and a science. It’s a combination of site design best practices, strategic thinking and the collective results of a million little tips and tricks. The Mysamaris SEO team will spare you the hassle of staying on top of the latest Google algorithm changes. We will monitor and continually improve your site to help you meet your SEO goals. Most importantly, we will always remember that nothing improves your search rankings more than compelling, relevant content that engages your existing constituents and attracts new visitors.

Custom WP Plugins

Working with Blackbaud and WordPress development standards, Mysmaris has developed custom plugins to help you use Luminate Online elements directly in your WordPress site. No more need to format a pagebuilder page to match your site, these forms work inside your site and are customized to inherit the styles of the WordPress template you already use!

WordPress plugins are small programs or scripts written in PHP that you install into a WordPress site. A lot like plugins for your browser, they enable your site to do things it doesn’t normally do. In this case that’s pass information back and forth to the Luminate Online system via Blackbaud’s API code.

Our plugins are designed for versatility and are readily customized by us so that they exactly meet your needs, including custom levels of usability, customizability and user friendliness tailored to match your organization’s situation.

Creative Services

Our fully integrated team of designers and developers work collaboratively, to make sure that each element in your website flows to the next. We pride ourselves on creating user friendly, attractive, and innovative websites to our customers’ full satisfaction. Whether we redesign, design your website from scratch, or integrate new functionality, you can be sure that your organization’s needs are considered at every step of the way so that we can deliver the best solution.

Project Management

Tight deadlines, rapid-fire deliverables, demanding requirements, and complicated technology: the success of projects of your organization requires that the best creative and innovative minds to be paired with the most knowledgeable and dedicated project managers available.

With this in mind, Mysamaris provides project managers for every project. At any phase, from inception to post-completion analysis, a Mysamaris project manager will be there for you. They will keep you up to date on progress and be ready to get answers for any questions you may have.

Content Management

The best websites are database driven systems with extensive backend tools to enforce design standards and facilitate rapid deployment of dynamic and engaging content. Selecting the right content management system (CMS) for your organization’s website is crucial.

Mysamaris works with you to get the best resources and tools available to fit the needs and budget of your organization. The process may seem overwhelming, but by focusing on your priorities and goals, and utilizing our expert knowledge of the available platforms, we will find the best fit, whether it is Convio or another platform, for your organization’s success.

Website Quality Assurance

Mysamaris practices robust QA processes that include functionality and user scenario test cases, cross-platform testing, load/speed testing, and user interface consistency.  Our cross-platform testing has become more extensive with tools to QA on 700+ possible platform and browser combinations as needed.  We track all issues to completion from 404’s to typos. While professional QA comes with every Mysamaris website deployment project, we can be retained to provide thorough QA services on projects deployed by others as an additional independent resource.

Fundraising

Online fundraising is crucial for your cause and can give your organization the opportunity for worldwide recognition and support. Your organization’s donors deserve the easiest possible donation experience. That’s why Mysamaris works with you step by step to set up or optimize your online transaction process, making it as streamlined as possible for your donors. We offer expertise in powerful tools, like Convio, Blackbaud, CiviCRM among others that can allow your organization to accept memorial and tribute gifts and set up recurring donations.

EVENT FUNDRAISING AND REGISTRATION

Need an event right now? We can also assist you in taking your event strategies to the next level by hosting a completely virtual event, enabling you to reach a new group of constituents, while saving you the overhead of a physical event.

Custom Data And Analysis

Mysamaris can produce custom reports that clearly illustrate your organization’s progress towards its goals and which bring to light hidden data trends you may not have noticed. We believe a report should be intelligent, scientific, intuitive to read and whenever possible, visually engaging. We can create everything from automatic recurring data pulls for your daily touch point meetings to comprehensive, graphic dashboards that you can take to the board meeting.

We provide in depth data-driven interpretation, analysis and recommendations based on our years of experience and our deep and up-to-date understanding of the nonprofit sector.

The Mysamaris reports development team has many years of experience creating custom Crystal Reports for databases of all sizes.

E-Constituent Engagement

Your members, donors, advocates, and volunteers want to be informed. They want to know about your services, new information and how they can help. The more you keep them up to date, the happier they will be.

The kind of on-going, interactive relationships that benefit both your constituents and your missions require a cohesive online strategy including outbound email campaigns, online awareness building through banner campaigns, blogs, and widgets; interactive media outreach through eCards, photo-essays and videos promoting your organization and encouraging your constituents to participate further in your cause.

Email Campaigns

Through reliable cross-platform testing and an understanding of email standards and practices, Mysamaris can provide newsletters, email campaigns and automated engagement sequences that are visually distinctive while staying content rich and reliably readable on all major email platforms. We also make sure that you get reliable metrics on delivery statistics and traffic to your website.

Social Media Optimization

Mysamaris develops comprehensive social networking strategies that reflect each organization’s unique mission.

We believe in the benefits of communicating directly with constituents. Engaging with their thoughts, concerns and expectations directly will empower them as your advocates in the social media world.

Mysamaris will assess your organization’s current involvement with social media and provide side-by-side support and custom tools for improving your presence. Whether you need us to manage the entirety of your organization’s social networking, educate staff for better results, or help determine which platforms to focus on, we are ready to work as part of your team. We can even build your organization’s first social media presence and aid in social media policy creation.

In complement to the social media strategy and optimization services provided by the Mysamaris social media team, we can also create and manage targeted advertising campaigns. Mysamaris will help you design visually appealing Facebook advertisements that will grow your fan base and increase traffic to your website. We can even create custom landing pages within Facebook, allowing you to immediately start the constituent engagement process the moment your ads are clicked.

Search Marketing for Nonprofits

Did you know that Google gives away $10,000 worth of monthly advertising credit to qualifying nonprofits? The Google Grants program can translate into a huge (free!) boost in relevant traffic to your website. Mysamaris works with its clients to guide them through the Google Grants application process ensuring that no delays occur. Once approved, Mysamaris will help your organization strategically set up its advertising campaigns. Already have Google Grants? The Mysamaris search marketing team is experienced in making sure you are getting the most value out of your grant.

Mysamaris is a certified Google Engage program partner.

Mysamaris can also help you set up and optimize paid search advertising campaigns on other platforms such as the Microsoft AdCenter which renders ads on Bing and Yahoo.

Website Development

Not only is your website the virtual headquarters of your organization, it is also a gateway for the potential beneficiaries of the services you provide. By examining the performance of your site and the behavior of your visitors, you can learn how to improve your cash flow as well as how to better serve your constituents. Do you need a platform upgrade? Maybe you just need advice on getting the most out of Convio, Blackbaud, Drupal, WordPress or something else?

Let us help you build the site of your dreams on the budget you have today.

Partnerships & Associations

Mysamaris partners and works with a range of technology partners to bring best of breed solutions to our clients.

 

LEARN MORE >

So you want to start a nonprofit?

Maybe you are a nonprofit professional currently between jobs or you have a great cause you feel isn’t being championed well enough; there are many reasons to consider founding a nonprofit organization. We will address the actual process of founding a non-profit in our next post; however first let’s dispel some myths.

If you come from the for-profit world you may have some misconceptions however:

1. Nonprofits don’t make money
This is a serious misconception, being a 501(c)(3) doesn’t mean there is no profit; it means that any profits go toward the work the NPO does. There are major nonprofits that make significant profits. You may have heard of the New York Stock Exchange, the NFL, or Harvard.

2. A nonprofit should have low or minimal overhead costs.
This is likely one of the most common misconceptions about how a nonprofit functions. The fact is a nonprofit has the same overhead as any other business. Rent, clerical supplies, computers, etc. All these cost money. Though there are programs that can result in significant savings, the fact is there will be a significant cost to running a business and a nonprofit IS a business.

3. Nonprofits get most of their funding from foundations.
Donations and grants from wealthy private and corporate foundations represent a small portion of the funding for most nonprofits. Individual gifts, those made by independent people actually makes up over 71% of the annual revenue for nonprofits nationally. Don’t count on a grant to carry a new organization, they are hard to get and can dry up through no fault of your own.

4. Nonprofits don’t need staff; they can use volunteers.
Nonprofits actually employ over ten percent of the US population. That’s not because they are run poorly; that’s because nonprofit employees need skills and real time to dedicate to the causes they support. Though some tasks are available from volunteers, these are usually unskilled labor type work. Some companies will donate time for marketing or accounting skills, but in the end it will not be a priority to them, expect to have to pay those costs eventually.

5. Nonprofit employees are those who couldn’t cut it in the “real world”.
This is probably the most offensive stereotype we have come across. Nonprofit professionals chose careers in the sector because they care about making an impact. Some may be a bit outspoken on the causes they support, but that’s what drives them to do what they do. Most people don’t realize that the nonprofit sector employs a significant number of MBAs.

6. Nonprofit work environments are informal and relaxed.
Though this is true in some cases, it is no more accurate than the description of the software industry, every workplace is different. If you expect casual attire you clearly have never seen the general staff of a large nonprofit in DC. Some organizations can be downright draconian in their adherence to the chain of command. Make no assumptions about what works in the nonprofit space.

Now that we’ve cleared a few of these up, stay tuned to this Facebook for more on starting a nonprofit, if you are still sure you are willing to follow that road.
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Augmented Reality Fundraising

Back in 2012 this prediction was made on “Giving in a Digital World”: 12 DIGITAL FUNDRAISING TRENDS FOR 2012 #3 AUGMENTED REALITY.

That’s right, 2012.

Does anyone remember this: www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqyKT0QLP2w? (No, we don’t either.)

So, 2012, we’re waiting…

With the hype currently running high around Pokémon GO we forget that this isn’t a new technology. Augmented reality has been possible since 1990s in its more primitive forms. High powered mobile technology has obviously spread the possibility further.

Strictly defined (thanks Wikipedia) “augmented reality (AR) is a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented (or supplemented) by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data.”

Some organizations have certainly made use of the tool for tours and similar applications but there is yet to be a major “win” using this entertaining hybrid medium to raise funds outside of closed settings. We can however expect to see this catch phrase begin to be used (and misused) in the field for some time to come.

Now creating an augmented reality fundraising tool is no mean feat. The world is a rather large place. For augmented reality to be engaging it needs to operate on a vast level. Users should be able to find an augmentation almost anywhere (something even Pokémon GO is still having issues with). In addition, there needs to be a reason to interact with it. Is it purely informational? Does it provide a gamification aspect? Most importantly for us, how does it generate a revenue stream? These are the real questions that need to be answered before a broad-scale AR application can be of use to a nonprofit fundraiser.

The most valuable use of this technology is going to be increasing cause awareness. Imagine being able to engage a potential donor anywhere with content pertinent to their immediate surroundings. The possibilities for parks and museums are obvious, but where can we make the leap to a larger scale?

Imagine an application designed for a historic preservation organization that can overlay historic images of real world locations on the fly? What about a history education group with an app that can pull up facts of interest wherever one goes? The options are limitless, but will it be a fundraising boom or another troublesome catch phrase?
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Fundraising is Not a Sin

After many years of experience in the nonprofit sector and years of collected data to prove its value, we are always astounded that so many organizations do not optimize their online activities for fundraising.

If we think about why this may be the case there are a few answers:

-Fear of Alienating the Audience-

Some leaders make decisions based around a fundamental belief that those who are interested in a cause are repulsed by fundraising asks. The problem here is that if this is the case, how exactly are they planning to help? There are several ways an individual can help, primarily they can volunteer, socially champion the cause, take political action or donate. Although all of these are to be encouraged, only donation makes the others possible. This is the “story” that has to be told.

-Fear of Appearing Needy/Weak-

Let’s be honest, successful leaders do not want to appear like they need help. Sometimes these drives carry forward to their first impulses about running an organization. The fact is nonprofits exist by tapping into the philanthropic impulse. Yes, nonprofits exist to do good, but they do that good with other people’s money. It is not a sign of failure to follow that model.

-Fear of Distracting From the Cause-

The best asks incorporate the cause and highlight the need. A good ask is a case statement. A well-crafted campaign MUST highlight the cause if it is to be effective.

-Lack of Knowledge of Best Practices-

Designing a web presence or communicating for a nonprofit is a specialized skill set. Sometimes nonprofits contract independent firms to design a web presence who do not know “the rules” or are being run without the budget to bring in experienced nonprofit writing experts. Sadly this can be a recipe for trouble. Always consider the long term costs of these decisions. Loss of email list names is permanent; lifetime donor value will decrease. An ineffective website will cost money in lost donations and eventually need to be redone, do it right the first time.
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