21NTC Session

Beyond Personas: Data-Driven Audience Insights and How to Use Them

This is a resubmission of an accepted 20NTC session proposal.


Speaker: Matt Derby, Senior Vice President, M+R

You probably know what a “typical” donor on your file looks like, and you may have even built out some personas and journeys for them. But that’s only the beginning! Organizations have the power to deliver a truly supporter-centric program that relies on the combination of behavioral data and enhanced demographics rather than gut instinct, staff opinion, and stereotypes. This session will demonstrate how to not only better reach your known audiences but find the hidden markets that may hold the key to your future fundraising success.

Piece of cake, right? In this session we’ll talk about how we’ve used advanced analytics to deliver the right message to the right audiences in the right channel – resulting in higher donor retention, cheaper acquisition, and excellent return on investment.

Session Type

60 minute session

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand how to look beyond simplified demographic personas to find hidden audiences in your supporter file.
  • Deploy data-driven strategies for learning more about your supporters.
  • Build deeper relationships with your donors by understanding their behavior.

Target Audience

Marketing/communications staff looking for more sophisticated ways to segment their list/reach new audiences - without relying on outdated stereotypes.


Matt Derby

Sr. Vice President


Matt has spent a dozen years at M+R working with organizations like World Wildlife Fund, the UN Refugee Agency, SEIU, Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, and American Museum of Natural History to build advertising programs, break fundraising records, develop online campaigns, and enact real change. Matt frequently presents as an expert on digital advertising strategies for major direct marketing conferences, including the Direct Marketing Association of NYC, the Non-profit Technology Conference, and the International Fundraising Conference.

Madeline Stanionis



Madeline Stanionis is a Partner at M+R, a communications, marketers, fundraising, advocacy firm that has worked exclusively with nonprofits fighting for a just and sustainable world. She has been raising money and organizing for 30 years, and is a frequent speaker and writer at fundraising, advocacy, and technology conferences and publications across the country. Madeline is the author of The Mercifully Brief, Real World Guide to Raising Thousands (If Not Tens of Thousands) of Dollars with E-mail, published by Emerson and Church.

Allyson Goldsmith

Senior Manager, Digital Advertising


Allyson is the Senior Manager, Digital Advertising for USA for UNHCR, where she is responsible for developing the organization’s advertising strategy and creative. She has expanded USA for UNHCR’s acquisition program with a focus on using data-driven algorithm tactics to drive growth.

Allyson has spent her career helping progressive nonprofits engage stakeholders across all digital platforms to drive advocacy and fundraising. She has worked for M+R and a variety of nonprofits including the World Food Program USA, National Organization for Women (NOW), and the United Nations Foundation where she managed their digital fundraising and advocacy programs.



March 23, 2021


9:45am – 10:45am