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Simple ideas for Little Green Light data cleanup

Posted January 4, 2014 by Timi Paccioretti

clean your data

Cleaning up your donor database can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. With these simple ideas, you can get your Little Green Light database in shape quick—and just in time for your fall fundraising appeals!

 

Identify and merge any duplicate records 

If you haven’t yet enabled LGL’s duplicate checking feature, do it today. This will allow for nightly reviews of your database for possible duplicates—an alert on your dashboard will notify you of any that need to be reviewed. You can even have the alerts emailed to you if you prefer.

 

Update your acknowledgment and letter templates

Now’s the time to archive any outdated or unused letter templates you’ve saved in your account. It’s also a great time to add any new templates so you’ll be prepared to send a prompt thank you for each newly received gift.

 

Review your campaigns, funds, appeals, and events

Be sure you mark any campaigns, funds, appeals, or events as “Inactive” if you are no longer accepting gifts for them. Set up a new ones before the gifts start rolling in.

 

Review your categories for duplicate and/or unused values

In Settings > Menu Items, review your categories and the values within them. Merge duplicate values and inactivate no longer needed values. You can also alphabetize them to make data entry even easier.

 

Make sure your Addressee and Salutation fields are as you want them 

It’s critical that you address your constituents appropriately both on the envelope (using the Addressee field) and inside the letter (using the Salutation field). Make sure those fields are in good shape for all your constituents, including organizations and individual, couple, and household constituents.

Take a look at our Knowledge Base article: Making global changes in your donor database, for suggestions on how to update categories or the Addressee/Salutation fields for many constituents at once.

 

Enable the Smarty Streets integration in your account

Tired of seeing multiple different abbreviations for street (i.e., St, St. Street, ST, etc.)? Using this handy app normalizes all your address information according to postal standards and confirms the address you are using is an actual address.

 

Consider running your database through the National Change of Address registry

The National Change of Address Registry (NCOA) contains the names and addresses of permanent change-of-address records from individuals, families, and businesses who have filed a change of address with the United States Postal Service. Running your data through NCOA helps you maintain up-to-date addresses for your contacts and saves you from having to manually update addresses in your database. If you already work with a mailhouse, check with them first—it’s likely they’re already performing this service for you.

Is there a database cleanup routine that you follow before the start of a new fiscal year? Share it with us on Twitter (@littlegrnlight) using  the hashtag: #datacleanup.

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