A customer relationship management (CRM) system is software that helps you share, organize, and update contact information across your entire team. Most CRMs are designed to help businesses manage their sales and marketing, but savvy campaigners are turning to CRMs as a solution for keeping in touch with supporters, donors, and volunteers.
The needs for a political campaign’s CRM are different from those of a typical small business. Small businesses may have dozens to hundreds of customers and leads to keep track of, but for a political campaign, a CRM needs to track thousands of supporters, donors, and volunteers. Additionally, political campaigns need their CRMs to integrate with industry-specific platforms like WinRed and GOP Data Center.
One more key difference comes down to pricing. Where a business’s sales and marketing functions may be limited to a few employees, everyone on a campaign needs access to contact information. Most CRMs are priced on a per user basis, which makes it difficult for a campaign to afford licenses for everyone on the team.
Best CRMs for Political Campaigns of 2021
- Datrm.in – Purpose-built political CRM priced for campaigns
- Zoho – Affordable, full-feature option for small teams
- Mailchimp – Popular email marketing platform that can be repurposed as a CRM
- ActiveCampaign – Best CRM for marketing automation
- HubSpot – Best free CRM
Best for Political Campaigns
Datrm.in is a CRM built by a veteran campaign technologist. It integrates with tools that campaigners use, like Gravity Forms, Mailchimp, and WinRed. More importantly, it’s priced to facilitate collaboration across every member of the team by avoiding per-user licensing fees. By focusing on the few key aspects of a CRM, Datrm.in helps campaigns scale their relationships and organize contacts.
Best for Small Teams
Zoho is an affordable, full-featured option for smaller teams. It’s free for up to 3 users and then $14 per user per month after that. It has plenty of integrations, but campaigners may be overwhelmed with the features related to a sales pipeline that don’t make sense for a political context.
Easy to Use Option
Mailchimp is first and foremost an email marketing platform popular with many campaigns, but it can also be used to maintain data about your supporters. The main downside is that Mailchimp is priced per contact for most plans, so even if someone is unsubscribed from marketing emails, you’ll still be charged for them.
Best for Marketing
ActiveCampaign brings together sophisticated tools for marketing automation for advanced users looking to build a robust digital program. These features come at a cost though, making this our most expensive per user option.
Best Free Option
HubSpot is an industry leader in marketing software and their blog is a valuable resource to digital marketers. Their entry-level product offering is a free CRM which has a number of features. The downside is that they will try to upsell you on their paid options.
The right CRM for your political campaign is the one you and your team will actually use. The software is only as good as the data it retains.