Evaluating Advocacy Software? Here's a Checklist

If you are among the decision-makers evaluating from which advocacy vendor your organization will purchase advocacy software, consider the following factors:

Advocacy software is a key puzzle piece to assembling a modern government relations program. With a variety of different digital advocacy tools on the market today, it can be overwhelming to review each advocacy product thoroughly in order to make the right decision that fits your organization’s needs. If you are among the decision-makers evaluating from which advocacy vendor your organization will purchase advocacy software, consider the following 5 factors:

1. Ease-of-Use

The ease-of-use of the software product you ultimately choose should be one of the most important factors you consider. Selecting an advocacy product that is simple and intuitive will save you time and stress down the road. Avoid platforms that require extensive implementation trainings and multiple hands-on demonstrations - the more training required to address the learning curve of the software likely means more confusion as you get deeper into the product. Platforms equipped with the latest technologies will make advocacy smart and easy for you and your advocates. 

2. Key Features and Value 

Look for advocacy software that provides the key features that directly align with what your organization needs. Some advocacy products have dozens of the capabilities and features, but the features aren’t necessarily useful for what you need - instead, they over-complicate the product you’re trying to access. Search for digital advocacy tools that exclusively focus on advocacy without being weighed down by the bells and whistles of other comprehensive products. Consider choosing a software platform that is designed purely to support your advocacy goals. 

3. Price Point 

Pricing for advocacy software runs the gamut. You may have seen other platforms with expensive packages, but advocacy software shouldn't break your organization's budget. You’re looking for advocacy software that is not only cost effective, but also congruent to your advocacy strategy. It is beneficial to explore all your options and find one that best fits your needs and goals. The good news is that there are advocacy software platforms available that are reasonably priced! 

4. Customer Support

Ask advocacy vendors on which communications channels they offer to manage customer support. The variety of options available will likely indicate the degree of responsiveness you will encounter when waiting for an answer. For example, at Muster - our team interacts with our clients over the phone, in person (depending on location), over email, and through a live chat. How seriously a company takes customer support is a big indicator of how well your experience with your new advocacy software will go. One way to scout out how customer-centric a company claims to be is by reading user reviews on software websites, like Capterra.

5. Integrations and Flexibility

Between your CRM/AMS, a fundraising platform, social media tools and other digital services you may use on a daily basis, it can be a time-saver to select an advocacy software that integrates with other technology you already use. Finding an advocacy software that integrates with your legacy platforms will save you a lot of time!

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