When CRM Met CMS:  A Marketing Love Story for Nonprofits
When CRM Met CMS:  A Marketing Love Story for Nonprofits

When CRM Met CMS:  A Marketing Love Story for Nonprofits

04/05/2022 by Angela Hatem
The rom-com rhyming tale of a nonprofit marketing match made in heaven.

This is going to be the telling of a modern marketing story, with acronyms, rhymes, and a bit of sass. Sorry, I mean SAAS.

So WTF is a CMS in a CRM like SFDC, and what in the world does a CMS in a CRM like SFDC mean to someone who works at an NFP like little old me?  Aaaaaand why is this woman all talking in rhymes, is it a trick or a glitch, does it happen all the time?  

So many excellent questions, and a reasonable assortment of showstopping, time saving, cost shaving answers.  

Let’s start with question three.  Much to the relief of my fellow Arkies, I do not constantly speak in rhyme, but as someone with a two-year-old who is currently on a Dr. Seuss kick, this answer is subject to change.  

Now that the rhyming issue has been addressed, let's get to the green eggs and ham of the matter.  WTF is a CMS?  

By definition, CMS is short for Content Management System, but ironically, content isn’t short for just one thing.  The word content can be used to describe almost anything that you try to smoosh underneath the marketing umbrella.  

Words can be content.  Images can be content.  Sites and sounds?  All content.  

Content is what engages your donors, motivates your volunteers, and bolters your mission.  It tells your people who you are, what you are doing, and how they can be a part of it. 

Pretty nifty huh?  

Within Salesforce CMS there are three standard content types.  

1. News:  A news article format with rich text and image support. Angela Translation:  Words, imagery, and pizzaz join forces in one awesome piece of content.

2. Image:  A form where you can add a media file or link to an external URLAngela Translation:  Pictures, video, a meme, you get the jist.  

3. Document:  A form where you can add content using any file type or external URL. Angela Translation:  More of a service and FAQ document.  Not a lot of frills, just gets to the point.  

That’s just the standard out-of-the-box Salesforce CMS content. If these content types aren’t making your heart sing, you do have the ability to create your own content types, but there are limits.  Cue the “DUN, DUN, DUUUUN!!” 

Now, WTF does CMS gotta do with SFDC and an NFP?  Greeeeat question.  

Marketing can get pricey, yes?  Outsourcing design can take time and more price, double yes.  Targeting your org’s various audiences?  Tricky and, once again, pricey.  Yes, yes, and yes!  

Not a winning trifecta if you are trying to move a mission, engage an audience, and make an impact all in one day.  

With Salesforce CMS, you don’t have to be a tech wizard or graphic artiste to build engaging and forward-facing online content.  With Salesforce CMS, your audience doesn’t have to be found, it’s right inside your Salesforce CRM.  (While a paid version of Salesforce CMS is available, hint-hint custom content types, so is a somewhat limited and friendly free version.)  

To put this in words that my dad would understand, you don’t need to run to Lowes for another paintbrush or nail, these tools already exist in your Salesforce toolbox!

Not only does Salesforce CMS fit nicely into your Salesforce toolbox, it fits into your other toolboxes as well.  

As a hybrid system, Salesforce CMS content is bendy.  Like yoga pose bendy.  You can build your content within Salesforce and connect it to your Experience Cloud site, or if you operate from a third-party site, headless APIs make things supes simple to connect your Salesforce CMS created content there as well.  

Want to create a personalized offer to donors who give over $500 annually?  No problem!  Want to share an impact video and message with your volunteers from all or one event?  Eeezzy peezy!  Have a specific request for donors and volunteers from within a specific area code?  Piece of cake!  Well not actual cake, but if your data can be sliced, it can be diced, and served up on a pretty platter.

Bananas. Simply, awesomely, bananas.  

There are a lot of content management systems that will help your org create pretty and flowery content. Content that is so gorgeous it could be hung up in a museum, but without the data, it really might as well just be hung up on your fridge.  

Think about all the blanket and impersonal emails you receive asking for a gift, or the generic invites you get to the fundraiser that isn’t your jam.  Where do those pieces of content usually land? Either in the trash or left in the dust as you scroll on by.  

Your time, your work, your ROI, all in the cyber wastebasket.  

Now think about the last ad you saw based on the types of music you like, for that band that you dig, who will be playing in the city you are from.  Where do you think that content goes?  

Boom. Mind blown.  

So are you intrigued?  You are ready to start thinking about “Oh the places you will go” with Salesforce CMS.  Faaaaaaantastic.  

To get started, I would recommend taking a whirl around the Salesforce CMS Trailhead Module.  From there, check out some trailmixes, gobble up some help content, and don’t be afraid to engage with others in the Salesforce community.  Chances are if you are asking about it, other friends in the community have asked about it too.  

Don’t got time for that, need a hand, some pearls of wisdom, or just someone to do the lifting for you?  Feel free to reach out! 

I will try to keep the rhymes to one at a time, but don’t place a bet on it.  It may cost you a dime. 

Want to hear more of the story straight from me? Reach out on LinkedIn. Want to get more stories and nonprofit tales in your inbox? Subscribe to the Arkus newsletter right in the sidebar of this post.