Estimated reading time: 3 minutes, 24 seconds

Review: Braze

brazeDon’t call them a CRM. Braze (formally known as Appboy) while can be categorized as a CRM is really a Lifecycle Marketing Platform helping companies connect with their consumers in an authentic way. Combining data, teams, and technology they are known for creating experiences that drive consumer loyalty.

You may know Braze as Appboy, a 2011 startup that specialized in free mobile software. In late 2017, they decided that Appboy didn’t suit the scope of the company anymore. SVP of Marketing, Marissa Aydlett stated, “We needed a name that moved beyond apps.” Braze or to unite or join with considerable strength, is the name the company decided on. Adylett continued, “We knew it matched what our purpose and strategy has been all along.”  Under Braze, the company continues to join people together through technology by connecting brands and their consumers through distinct channels.

In Use:
Braze has worked with numerous nonprofits with the end goal of helping them relate to their donors on a personal and human level. Aydlett stressed the importance of personalized messages to gain the trust and support of backers. Using this approach, Braze utilizes everything from SMS messaging, emails, and push notifications.

Every nonprofit communicates with their benefactors and volunteers differently. It’s important that an organization understands how their volunteers consume technology in order to better reach them. Through Braze’s platform, a nonprofit can send push notifications, emails, SMS, and a multitude of different messaging. Together Braze works with individual charities to create a unique strategy to decide the best way to approach their backers. Braze stresses the importance that not every donor ingests technology the same way. Aydlett advises nonprofits to make sure they are “…engaging people and reminding donors and supporters how their efforts can benefit an organization.” Braze took their knowledge of communication and helped the American Cancer Society (ACS) increase their in-app fundraising by 34%. By using personalized and emoji-filled push notifications, the ACS were able to appeal to their backers that they could not have done with generic notification.

Technology Used:
Braze shines when sending out messaging to donors so it’s important that the nonprofit has an iPhone or Android compatible app. While not necessary, it would allow the charity to get the most out of Braze.

Ease of Use:


The app is easy to use, allowing someone who may not be particularly tech-savvy to pull reports, see key metrics, and send out notifications. Tech support is available for those who may need it.

Connecting with donors and volunteers on a human level is essential for any nonprofit to amass support and earn trust. With their lifecycle engagement software, Braze opens to open the door for nonprofits to raise the necessary funds to help their constituents. While all nonprofits can benefit from Braze, Adylett notes that the charities that benefit the most from Braze are those that have prioritized personalization to build a connection with benefactors and volunteers. From emoijis to personalized messaging, Braze sets themselves apart from similar softwares.


  • Easy to Use

  • Pricing depends on the organization

  • Excels in message and channel personalization

  • Proven track record of helping nonprofit campaigns succeed

  • Can track metrics


  • May be too expensive for smaller to medium size nonprofits

  • Tech support and Customer service could be more helpful

My Opinion:

Customers seem to have nothing but good things to say about Braze. They appreciate their exclusive features, the ability to track metrics, and the overall ease of navigating the software.  When it comes to negative reviews regarding Braze, I’ve only seen constructive criticism. For instance, tech support could be more helpful for those non tech-savvy individuals. Taking this criticism for what it’s worth, Braze will be able to better train their tech support to understand the issues that their customers are facing and essentially improve their software.

The only red flag that I saw was the price. Usually when a company refuses to disclose their pricing it tends to be steep. I do however appreciate Braze’s commitment and willingness to work around a nonprofit’s budget.

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Danielle Loughnane

Danielle Loughnane earned her B.F.A. in Creative Writing from Emerson College and has currently been working in the data science field since 2015. She is the author of a comic book entitled, “The Superhighs” and wrote a blog from 2011-2015 about working in the restaurant industry called, "Sir I Think You've Had Too Much.” In her spare time she likes reading graphic novels and snuggling with her dogs.

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