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Driving to More Data - Shelter Animals Count
Shelter Animals Count launched The National Database in November 2015 to collect, steward and provide the most credible and comprehensive animal sheltering data for the animal welfare industry.
 
With a year of operations and significant participant acquisition under its belt, the challenge that was revealing itself was keeping shelters current on their monthly data inputs.  Shelter Animals Count (SAC) was approaching its first full-year data publish for the public and industry, and had far fewer full-year data records than desired.
 

The “Data Collection” Challenge

Shelters tend to be overcrowded, underfunded and under staffed with more requests upon them each day than they can address.
 
Shelter Animals Count was asking all sheltering organizations to register and report their data each month using the Basic Data Matrix form (available in the Data Portal)—an industry standard for reporting summary level animal data that requires the entry of approx. 56 data points on animal intakes and outcomes each month.
 
There were no incentives for participation - just the belief in doing the right thing to help fill a long-standing industry information gap.
 
This dynamic has resulted in 1) registered shelters not staying current with their data and 2) shelters not registering for SAC at the rate needed to achieve a true national picture 
 

The “Data Compliance Solution”

Canvasblu Digital and the SAC Marketing Committee Chair met with the specific goal of overcoming this hurdle. The outcome of the meeting was a strategy to create a time-sensitive, incentive-based national campaign, encouraging existing participants to enter their data and to structure the program in way that would encourage new shelters to register and submit their data.
 
The campaign was branded the Shelter Animals Count Data Drive and included development of a campaign logo/identity, email series, home-page take-over with prominent campaign countdown clock, integration with the data-entry portal, packaged posts/graphics/news releases for supporting board organizations’ use in social, blogs and newsletters.
 
The campaign was launched in January of 2017 soliciting full-year 2016 data with a sweepstakes like incentive structure. Total grants and gifts offered were over $20,000.
 

The Results (as of April 2019)

The outcomes from the campaign were amazing, achieving:
  • 1683 Data Drive Entries
  • Increased data compliance of 190% (2105 Full Year Datasets - 25,260 data records)
  • 200 New Registrations with complete datasets
 
The initial Data Drive results convinced the board to make the campaign a main-stay for each data publish, slating it to be a bi-annual event, and has since have increased the frequency to quarterly.  
 

With its 6th Data Drive campaign just completed:

  • SAC has generated a cumulative 286% increase in data compliance and generated 736 new participating shelters (over 13% of the entire database) through these campaigns
  • SAC has given over $100,000 in grants and other prizes to its participating shelters
  • The Data Drives also spawned a new SAC funder, generating an additional $50,000 for the organization, and continues to engage its existing funders in both sponsorships and promotional activity