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 […]

If you’re going to hide the ask, just don’t mail at all (Tip #17)

Don’t hide your ask deep in your letter.  If you’re spending the money to send out direct mail solicitations, don’t be shy! Prominently and repeatedly make your ask.  In fact, some of the best direct mail fundraising letters not only make the ask several times in the letter, but also in the outer envelope teaser […]

Focus on user experience in the mail too, not just online (Tip #16)

Increase response rates by pre-filling your donors’ personal information on your direct mail reply cards.  It might be tempting to just leave these blank (it’s probably modestly cheaper than pre-filling), but don’t give in to the temptation! If you pre-populate donor name, address and ID code, that makes it quicker and easier for donors to […]

Direct Mail Fundraising Tip of the Week (#9)

Increase your response rates by including mission-relevant involvement devices in your direct mail.  These aren’t premiums like address labels.  Instead, I’m talking about items that require the donor to interact with your mail package and do something.  These are things like holiday cards, get well cards, meal tickets and table tent cards that you ask […]