There is a lot of feature overlap between NGP-VAN and Blue Utopia. Both are dedicated to Democratic and Progressive causes and both provide a full-stack of integrated tools for communication, advocacy, fundraising, and donor-management. An important distinction is where we don't overlap. Blue Utopia does not offer voter data (The 'VAN' side of NGP-VAN). BlueUtopia is a supporter-management system, geared toward helping you; target, engage, activate, fundraise, and build relationships with your effective audience. So the comparison below is with the 'NGP' portion of NGP-VAN. With that, here are a few key differences between BlueUtopia and NGP.
Usability. For campaign staff that haven’t used NGP for years or who don’t not have months to learn how to use it, NGP is a very difficult system to use. There is a reason ease-of-use is so important. A lot of the information that can help a candidate or organization grow and build better relationships comes from activities, interactions, and local knowledge. This information flows through volunteers and campaign staff. When that staff can’t use the data system, then that information gets lost. BlueUtopia, in stark contrast to NGP, can be learned in minutes and used effectively by any staff member with almost any level of expertise. That allows everyone on the team to add information and make the system more useful.
Pricing. NGP is prohibitive expensive ffor a lot of organizations. Then they try to lock clients into long-term contracts. In contrast, BlueUtopia offers both annual and month-to-month subscriptions, along with scaled pricing. With scaled pricing, a campaign just starting out can can get up and running on Blue Utopia for around $50/month. See more pricing details here
Product Differences. NGP offers compliance in most jurisdictions in the U.S., whereas BlueUtopia offers compliance for just a few states and the FEC. Both companies offer an integrated email broadcast tool, sign-up forms, targeted list-building, and all the features you'd expect in a fundraising and advocacy system. Lastly, whereas NGP gets frequent complaints about its support, BlueUtopia is lauded for it's fantastic customer support.