What’s your direct mail suppression strategy? (Tip #22)

Be careful not to over-suppress. What do you do when someone calls and asks to be taken off your mailing list?  Do you just say OK and pull them from all future communication? The better solution is to engage them, and use this opportunity to build a deeper relationship.  Try to solve their desire for reduced […]

Keys to a strong fundraising offer

A few weeks ago I wrote about what it takes to have a strong fundraising offer.  While on vacation this week in beautiful Santa Barbara, CA, I found a great example of a strong fundraising offer. This counter-top display was in the Westmont College bookstore.  It isn’t pretty.  There’s no flashy branding.  But the offer […]

How often can you use a match challenge in the mail? (Tip #21)

Matching challenges help increase direct mail response rates and total revenue.  I’ve seen nonprofits that use matches in as many as 7-10 of their mail appeals each year.  Probably seems excessive, right?  The interesting thing is, it doesn’t get old.  Donors love leverage. Use a match as frequently as you can – they work well!

Are you constantly reinventing your direct mail wheel? (Tip #20)

Find a control package (or several).  I’m always surprised when I talk to nonprofit organizations and hear things like, “we’re working on a new holiday package because our board thinks we’ve used the old one too long – they’re bored with it.” I’m all for testing.  Testing is important.  But before you begin testing, you’ve […]

What makes for a strong direct mail fundraising offer? (Tip #19)

A good offer is one that is specific, tangible, urgent and solvable.  Here are some examples: Your gift of $19.40 will provide holiday meals for 10 hungry, homeless, hurting people today.  OR Your $500 gift today will help us rush flu vaccines to 8 villages to save the lives of children like Eduardo.  Please hurry! […]

A solid website is the key to your integrated media strategy

Your website should (read: must) be the focal point of your entire integrated fundraising strategy. Why? Simply put, 99% of your donors will never walk through the doors of your office.  But a significant majority of them (over 65%) will visit your website.  Some will even visit on a regular basis.  For most of your […]