15 June, 2013

This is a post to start a discussion, something of an expansion of Dave's blog (Let's Market CiviCRM better) and Jessica's blog (Expanding end users). I guess it's about starting to get some practical ideas around toolkits to help the community undertake the ideas mentioned in the above blogs.

Over the past couple of weeks I have done a couple of CiviCRM consultations and demos with interested parties, some who had never seen CiviCRM before and others who had.

I consider myself reasonably knowledgeable with navigating around CiviCRM and thus when giving demos, I can show people features i think they will appreciate and enjoy, in the appropriate ways and clearly explain concepts, techniques and approaches for use.

In some of the consultations...

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29 May, 2013
One of the interesting conversations started at CiviCON was about marketing. Great energy and good ideas came out of small groups that met to brainstorm ways to amplify our voice. We broadly agreed that it's time for CiviCRM to be unleashed, time for a campaign to reel in more users.
A number of people have put their hands up to volunteer to take marketing forward after the conference, including John Derry, CiviCRM integrator and marketing consultant. He listened closely, took notes, and has since given a lot of thought to how we might bring many more organizations into the the fold.
A few days ago, a CiviCRM marketing strategy arrived in my inbox from John which addresses a range of initiatives from public...
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21 May, 2013

G2 Crowd http://www.g2crowd.com/ is a web site that describes itself as providing business software reviews.

They are currently running a comparative review of CRM products http://www.g2crowd.com/categories/crm/compare in which they classify CiviCRM as a 'small business' CRM (but then Salesforce is also classified the same way, along with Workbooks.com and Microsoft Dynamics CRM).

Currently (at this time) CiviCRM has only 9 reviews (against 536 for Salesforce) so it would be great if it got a few more, so if you would like to post your review you can do so here... http://www.g2crowd.com/products/civicrm-reviews


14 May, 2013

We have seen two recent breakthroughs for people who want to spend more time on implementing awesome websites and less time fiddling with hosting.

Pantheon has launched a hosting service for Drupal that’s even simpler than cPanel and has seriously good performance and scalability built-in. We don’t need to setup caching anymore or worry about a reverse-proxy server; all we need to do is enjoy designing and configuring our sites. Developers like it just as much as implementers because it clearly separates the dev, testing and live environments and plugs nicely into GitHub. It schedules backups and it’s easy to move your site elsewhere if you want to.

CiviCRM Starter Kit is a Drupal-and-CiviCRM-in-one bundle that I have been interested in. It includes a sensible choice of modules and extensions to get you...

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05 April, 2013

During the last few hours of the Civi Sprint in London, Jen (who is new to Civi) and I had a look at some basics on the CiviCRM website (civicrm.org) and have identified some problems and possible solutions.  Noting too radical mind and most involve minimal changes to the actual content as that's perhaps for a later date.

Home page

Problem: Presented with too many options: Primary navigation, secondary navigation, left hand list of Civi components
Solution: Remove left hand list of Civi components

Problem: Isn’t clear what the slideshow is. In fact it is case studies relating to the different needs of Civi organisations
Solution: Need to label them as “Case studies”

Problem: No text on the home page explaining what CiviCRM is in a few words.
Solution: Replace “A fully integrated CRM solution” and the list of Civi...

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25 February, 2013

CiviCRM is currently used by thousands of organizations around the world, and an increasing percentage of the product and associated services come directly from the community. At the same time, as with any open source project, there are core 'keeping the lights on' activities that are critical to ensure the ongoing growth and health of the project.

We need to ensure that the release cycle is steady and solid, that our servers and infrastructure are looked after, that people with good ideas can find each other, and we need to do all those things that everyone agrees are great ideas anybut no-one can quite get around to finding the time to do!

Think about Wikipedia...  it's an amazing resource because of all of the contributions made by various wikipedians, but without a server infrastructure to run everything on, there would be no Wikipedia. Without a well oiled machine at the heart of CiviCRM, we wouldn't be able to put people's contributions to best use.

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15 February, 2013

CHASE is an annual conference/exhibition for charities and associations... http://www.conferencehouse.co.uk/CHASE/chase_home.aspx  ...organised in London and has been running for some years now.

I was invited to participate in a round-table discussion on CRM based on SaaS (ie 'cloud computing') technology to represent CiviCRM at this event, and I thought it would be good to establish an exhibition stand to represent CiviCRM at this event.  I invited other London-based CiviCRM service providers to collaborate on this event and five of us agreed to share the costs of the stand -

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