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60 Ideas in 60 Minutes


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DMA-NF Chicago conference

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60 Ideas in 60 Minutes

  1. 1. 60 IDEAS in 60 MINUTES Direct Mail Fundraising at Its Best!
  2. 2. Today’s Panel Speakers Tim Kersten Chief Executive Officer RKD Group 972.664.2316 Steve Maggio President/Chief Creative Officer DaVinci Direct, Inc. 508.746.2555, ext. 511 Tiffany Neill Partner/Owner Lautman, Maska, Neill and Company 202.296.9660, ext. 209
  3. 3. Introducing Tiffany Neill Partner/Owner Lautman, Maska, Neill and Company
  4. 4. United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Launch @lautmandc 4
  5. 5. @lautmandc 5 Use Mail to Support Major Gift Fundraising • Select donors targeted by Major Gift Officers. • Mirror themes and case for support in mailing. • Use the same “Targeted Gift Amount” they receive from the MGO.
  6. 6. Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Renewal @lautmandc 6
  7. 7. @lautmandc 7 Make the First Ask a Monthly Gift Ask • On proven approaches (core renewal notices) test having two-line ask. • Measure success both by sign ups and no harm to one-time giving. • Check online giving for people who use donation form as a payment method.
  8. 8. PCRM Survey Mailing @lautmandc 8 @lautmandc
  9. 9. @lautmandc 9 Involve Your Donors in Your Work with a Survey • Use a mix of questions that include both “mission” and “What’s in it for me?” • Make sure you can track and/or capture data. • Use newsletters to provide feedback on survey results.
  10. 10. Meals on Wheels Planned Giving Newsletter @lautmandc 10
  11. 11. @lautmandc 11 Make Room for Planned Giving Marketing Efforts • Direct mail donors are excellent planned giving prospects – but they may not see themselves that way. • Need to combine education, lead generation, and stewardship. • Make sure your EIN and preferred bequest language is EVERYWHERE.
  12. 12. HRC Control Acquisition with Sticker @lautmandc 12
  13. 13. • Facebook and other online ads can generate new names • Offer inexpensive freemiums (address labels, bumper stickers) • Fulfill with acquisition @lautmandc 13 Use Acquisition to Fulfill Online Offers
  14. 14. Planned Parenthood of DC Capital Campaign @lautmandc 14
  15. 15. Planned Parenthood of DC Capital Campaign Program Fulfillment @lautmandc 15
  16. 16. @lautmandc 16 Simple Recognition Can Get Grassroots Donors Involved in a Capital Campaign • Direct response donors are often the last to hear about capital campaigns. • You can involve them in low-level giving with simple recognition – “your name will appear in the program opening day.” • Make sure back-end is ready!
  17. 17. Chesapeake Bay Foundation Back-End Calendar Offer @lautmandc 17
  18. 18. @lautmandc 18 Too Expensive to Mail Everyone? Offer it on the Back End • If you have an anchor premium mailing, but some segments are causing too much of a net investment – try offering it on the back end! • Have a fun fulfillment effort ready. • Not recommended for high value donors (PG donors, lapsed high value). For them the expense of the front end may be worth it.
  19. 19. Heifer Busy Bee @lautmandc 19
  20. 20. @lautmandc 20 Clear, Targeted Asks that Translate Into One-time and Sustainer Gifts • Think about how symbolic gifts translate for both one-time giving and monthly. • Check language carefully to watch restrictive giving. • Bonus – good use of a celebrity!
  21. 21. New Israel Fund Where We Work @lautmandc 21
  22. 22. PAWS Blueprint @lautmandc 22
  23. 23. Save the Chimps “A Day In the Life” Poster @lautmandc 23
  24. 24. @lautmandc 24 Create a Visual to Showcase Your Work • Diagrams, maps, blueprints and “a day in the life” are great ways to help donors visualize your work. • Great approaches for those who don’t go online. • Test, test, test … sometimes inserts can depress results.
  25. 25. MCHF Challenge Coin @lautmandc 25
  26. 26. @lautmandc 26 Use Front-End Premiums that Are Meaningful to the Audience • Think outside the box – “what matters to this audience.” • Be willing to spend more to make more. • Work as a team with production!
  27. 27. HRC Summer of Action Online and Offline @lautmandc 27
  28. 28. @lautmandc 28 Make a Big Splash to Take Advantage of a Moment and Get People to Act • Have a big moment coming up? (marches, rallies, big public events) make it meaningful to people who can’t participate. • Have a look and feel. • Mix actions, merchandize, gifts – make it fun and meaningful to the audience.
  29. 29. House of Ruth Annual Report Mailing @lautmandc 29
  30. 30. @lautmandc 30 Turn Something You “Have to Send” into a Fundraising Moment • First ask: “Do I really have to send this?” (Annual reports often mean more to the organization than they do to the donor.) • If the answer is “yes” – you can make it meaningful to the members and fundraise at the same time. • It’s a moment for donor recognition – “If you give just $200 more, your name will be printed in this report next year.”
  31. 31. HRC and GMHC Personalized Note Card @lautmandc 31
  32. 32. @lautmandc 32 Personalized, Meaningful Correspondence Makes Donors Feel Great While They Give! • Digital printing creates a cost-effective way to personalize postcards and other material. • Have a call to action (store discount, online action, follow up) on the postcard to make it interactive. • Donors love these!
  33. 33. Heifer PIH Welcome Package @lautmandc 33
  34. 34. @lautmandc 34 Warmly Welcome New Donors and Get Them Involved • Welcome kits (this one is for high-value donors) start the relationship on the right foot. • Give people something to do as a next step: new donor survey, petition, event promotion. • Make sure you fulfill your promises!
  35. 35. USHMM CGA New Rate Mailing @lautmandc 35
  36. 36. @lautmandc 36 Let Your Donors Know When a New Giving Opportunity is Available • New CGA rates? IRA roll over extension? Make room in your mailing schedule to tell the right donors about these opportunities. • Use data to find the right people for whom the offer will have meaning. • These don’t need to be fancy! They are a means to provide information of value to your donors.
  37. 37. Pioneers Phone Calendar @lautmandc 37
  38. 38. @lautmandc 38 Sometimes the Best Ideas Come From the Donors – Listen to Them • A phone calendar? Really, Tiffany? • Yes, donors on Facebook in posts about the previous year’s calendar said, “Why can’t we have pictures of things that matter to us?” • Make sure you check these things against your fundraising instincts, but don’t be afraid to consider ideas “just because you didn’t have them.”
  39. 39. Masonic Home and School of Texas Acquisition @lautmandc 39
  40. 40. @lautmandc 40 Use Acquisition to Reinstate Lapsed Donors (even not very lapsed) • Your donors gave for the first time to the acquisition – they may again! • Target lapsed donors, or even “at risk of lapsing” donors. • Include them with your acquisition merge/purge.
  41. 41. Introducing Steve Maggio President/Chief Creative Officer DaVinci Direct, Inc.
  42. 42. 42 @davincidirect Use Proven Appeal Themes as “Pillars”
  43. 43. • “Challenge Match” and “Annual Fund” are classic appeals that work. • Create a unique look and feel with format, logo and design. • Position strong appeals your most productive slots: Nov/Dec/Jan/Feb. Use Proven Appeal Themes as “Pillars” 43 @davincidirect
  44. 44. 44 @davincidirect Remind Your Donors to Give
  45. 45. • Mail a follow-up mailing two to four weeks after original mailing. • Duplicate the look and feel of original mailing, but with smaller, less expensive Monarch format. Make letter brief and urgent. • The follow-up typically raises 60% - 90% as much as original mailing. Remind Your Donors to Give 45 @davincidirect
  46. 46. 46 @davincidirect Test a “Blind OE” to Lift Response
  47. 47. • The “Mystery Factor” can pique donor’s curiosity. • Test in acquisition first, against teaser and/or standard OE with corner card. • Even works with name and address label packages. Test a “Blind OE” to Lift Response 47 @davincidirect
  48. 48. 48 @davincidirect Cultivate High-Dollar Donors with a Donor Society
  49. 49. • This Leadership Circle package looks special, with upscale format and production values. • Donor society has its own brand, with tiered levels and different levels of recognition and benefits. • These donors get a special acknowledgement, newsletter and other cultivation – all with same brand. Cultivate High-Dollar Donors with a Donor Society 49 @davincidirect
  50. 50. 50 @davincidirect Change Newsletter Self-Mailer to Component Package
  51. 51. • Positioning the newsletter as an appeal – with a personalized letter/reply slip and RE – can increase results ten-fold over a self-mailer. • Make cover letter brief, with a strong call to action. • Use separate reply slip to reinforce the ask. Change Newsletter Self-Mailer to Component Package 51 @davincidirect
  52. 52. 52 @davincidirect Test an Innovative Format with “Localization”
  53. 53. 53 @davincidirect Test an Innovative Format with “Localization”
  54. 54. • This package has an oversized reply slip, which helps make the case for support. • Use “Localization:” Here a state outline and laser copy highlight the work being done in the Donor’s state. • Design is bold and patriotic, with Veterans Day theme/logo. 54 @davincidirect Test an Innovative Format with “Localization”
  55. 55. 55 @davincidirect Develop Member Benefits with Real Value
  56. 56. 56 @davincidirect Boston Symphony Orchestra
  57. 57. • Benefits must relate to needs and desires of your audience. State them clearly! • In this case, they range from discounts, advance notice of concerts, and “behind the scenes” events –– to special parking and dining privileges. • Top level includes the prestige of meeting with renowned conductors and artists. Develop Member Benefits with Real Value 57 @davincidirect
  58. 58. 58 @davincidirect Create a Special Package for Lapsed Recapture
  59. 59. 59 @davincidirect Perkins School for the Blind Lapsed Recapture
  60. 60. • This greeting card format is a change-up in a program of mostly #10 renewal packages. • Cover photo is cute and attractive and relates to mission of helping vision-impaired kids overcome obstacles. • Copy tells donor she is special, she is making difference, and laser handwriting makes it look more personal. • Package uses strong “Challenge Match” offer. Create a Special Package for Lapsed Recapture 60 @davincidirect
  61. 61. 61 @davincidirect Create a “Pre-Lapsing” Strategy
  62. 62. 62 @davincidirect MDA Anniversary Package
  63. 63. • Improve retention with a conversion package that renews first-time donors more effectively. • For MDA, we used a “mini-note card format” with an anniversary theme. • Package celebrates the donor’s “one year anniversary of giving” in a positive way, instead of saying “we haven’t heard from you in a while.” Create a “Pre-Lapsing” Strategy 63 @davincidirect
  64. 64. 64 @davincidirect Use Real Handwriting –– the Ultimate Personal Touch
  65. 65. 65 @davincidirect Atlanta Humane Holiday Card to Majors
  66. 66. • Real handwriting makes the note more personal. • It’s expensive, but worth it for your top donors. • Use live, first-class postage on OE, test it on RE. 66 Use Real Handwriting to Add the Ultimate Personal Touch @davincidirect
  67. 67. 67 @davincidirect Tell a Story that Intrigues Donors and Prospects
  68. 68. • Don’t talk about “ME” (the institutional language that some organizations use). Talk about how “YOU” the donor make great work possible. • Don’t focus on the “millions” who need help, focus on one person –– or one family. • Make it emotional & personal. • Test long copy –– it works for many! Tell a Story that Intrigues Donors and Prospects 68 @davincidirect
  69. 69. 69 @davincidirect Integrate Message Across Multiple Channels
  70. 70. • For American Fondouk, year-end direct mail appeal was augmented by year-end email series and lightbox on their home page. • Visuals of working animals in Fez Morocco match the mail package and highlight the need for free veterinary care. • Copy is brief and urgent. Integrate Message Across Multiple Channels 70 @davincidirect
  71. 71. 71 @davincidirect Use Photos to Highlight Your Mission
  72. 72. • Cute kids and animals are response generators. • Choose photos with eye contact, emotion. • Composition should be simple, no group photos. Use Photos to Highlight Your Mission 72 @davincidirect
  73. 73. 73 @davincidirect Leverage Holidays that Relate to Mission
  74. 74. • Thanksgiving is a natural for programs to feed the hungry. • Offer is clear and compelling. • Photos and client quotes reinforce offer. • Prayer card is useful and relates to mission. Leverage Holidays that Relate to Mission 74 @davincidirect
  75. 75. 75 @davincidirect Test a First-Person Story
  76. 76. • Clare’s cancer diagnosis is the “hook.” “When Riley doctors told me ‘you have cancer’ I saw it as a challenge.” • The line, “I’m told you’ve been very generous in helping to save Riley Kids like me,” puts the donor at the center of the story. • First person approach tested against control — and won with similar response rate but higher average gift. Test a First-Person Story 76 @davincidirect
  77. 77. 77 @davincidirect Name and Address Labels Still Work!
  78. 78. • Premiums help generate increased response – especially in Acquisition. • Compelling letter and photos motivate mission-driven folks. • Name label-acquired donors will renew without a premium. Name and Address Labels Still Work! 78 @davincidirect
  79. 79. 79 @davincidirect Test Different Gift Arrays
  80. 80. • Circle the upgrade amount with a little note saying “this amount would really help.” • Test amounts related to the specific needs that the donor’s gift will fund. • Test ascending versus descending order, high ceiling/low floor, and open-ended. Test Different Gift Arrays 80 @davincidirect
  81. 81. 81 @davincidirect Promote Your Sustainer Program Online
  82. 82. • Monthly donor clubs provide regular income you can count on! • This one is branded as “Partners in Victory” – relating to shared goal to defeat diabetes. • Sell donors on the convenience and efficiency of monthly giving. Promote Your Sustainer Program Online 82 @davincidirect
  83. 83. 83 @davincidirect Use a Bounce-Back Card to Create a “Touchpoint”
  84. 84. • Bounce back is an inexpensive insert that creates a touchpoint between donor and your program’s beneficiaries. • In this case, it’s a card sent from the donor to someone in the hospital during the holidays. Can also be a holiday ornament with kid’s art if it’s a pediatric program, or a Thanksgiving card if it’s a food program, etc. • Donor keeps half and send half back with her gift. Use a Bounce-Back Card to Create a “Touchpoint” 84 @davincidirect
  85. 85. 85 @davincidirect Make Your Offer Simple and Specific
  86. 86. • “Operation Backpack” is easy to understand: give kids in NYC shelters a backpack filled with “back-to-school supplies.” • Deadline creates urgency. • Here the bounce back goes to a kid living in a homeless shelter. Make Your Offer Simple and Specific 86 @davincidirect
  87. 87. Introducing Tim Kersten Chief Executive Officer RKD Group
  88. 88. June Mailing 88 CONTROL CARRIER TEST CARRIER Los Angeles Mission @rkdfundraising
  89. 89. Keep It Simple 89 • Same client, same offer, different results: Simple, direct carrier lifted net revenue by 69%. • If it looks important, it is. • Less emphasis on branding and more on direct response can often result in more income. @rkdfundraising
  90. 90. Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund Wall Rubbing Insert 90 @rkdfundraising
  91. 91. Create a Tangible Connection with Inserts 91 • As used by VVMF, an insert can build an emotional bridge with the donor. • Inserts can emphasize the offer and amplify the power of a donor’s gift. • Add an extra layer of urgency with a insert. @rkdfundraising
  92. 92. Food Bank for New York City High-Impact Localization 92 @rkdfundraising
  93. 93. Improve Response Using Localization 93 • Telling a donor or prospect their gift is impacting locally is one thing. Showing them is another. • Regionalization is a powerful technique to strengthen any annual campaign. • Use regionalization to make a mailing personally relevant for the donor. @rkdfundraising
  94. 94. American Bible Society Major Donor Special Treatment 94 @rkdfundraising
  95. 95. Meaningful Involvement = Meaningful Giving 95 • Include a “Prepared Especially For” folder to neatly hold multiple communications and make the donor feel singular and important. • Boost the relationship and revenue with mission-oriented involvement devices, as does ABS with the Chinese Bible page. • Use impact oriented photos. @rkdfundraising
  96. 96. Lurie Children’s Hospital Multi-Channel Campaign 96 Direct Mail @rkdfundraising
  97. 97. Lurie Children’s Hospital Multi-Channel Campaign 97 Landing Page email @rkdfundraising
  98. 98. Multi-Channel Go Where Your Donors Live . . . and Give 98 • Donors are becoming more sophisticated in their use of digital engagement. • Mobile, social, paid search, traditional e-communications. Use them all to meet the donor where she will engage . . . and give. • Donors who receive communication by more than one channel are roughly 2-1/2x more valuable. @rkdfundraising
  99. 99. Matching Grant Treatments that Work 99 @rkdfundraising
  100. 100. More Than One Way to Match: What’s Yours? 100 • The matching gift check or voucher is a well-traveled, proven technique used successfully by many organizations, but not all . . . • Visual emphasis of offer and impact can out-pull the traditional check bounce-back. • Test, test, test. @rkdfundraising
  101. 101. 101 Control Test American Bible Society Bible Delivery Mailing @rkdfundraising
  102. 102. Use Photos at Point of Sale to Boost Response • A mission-oriented photo on a reply or bounce- back can lift response. • It’s better to use no photo than the “wrong” one. • Photo subject matter should reinforce what donor’s gift will accomplish. • The photo test shown raised 75% more gross income than the no-photo control. 102 @rkdfundraising
  103. 103. Partners In Health Map Mailing 103 @rkdfundraising
  104. 104. Why Map Mailings Work 104 • Outer envelope has bulk, creating intrigue. • High perceived value. • Simply an over-sized case for support. @rkdfundraising
  105. 105. International Humanitarian Organization Band-Aid Bounce Back Mailing 105 @rkdfundraising
  106. 106. Tangibility and Bounce Backs 106 • Creates a direct correlation between the offer and the ultimate benefactors, poverty-stricken children, in this case. • Amplifies the urgency to respond now. • Increases the perceived value of the bounce-back. @rkdfundraising
  107. 107. Food Bank for New York City Localized Label Art 107 @rkdfundraising
  108. 108. Label Art Is a Science 108 • For better results, test label art featuring regionally iconic visuals. • Can’t beat the control? Test foil. Costs more, but response is often enough to cover the expense and then some. • Test label backer creative, especially in acquisition. The results may surprise you. @rkdfundraising
  109. 109. Advertorial Inserts 109 @rkdfundraising
  110. 110. More Information Can Mean More Giving 110 - Appearance of a third-party endorsement. - Journalistic style allows a broader focus on multiple aspects of both the problem and the solution. - The information is relevant to the donor. - The creative is donor-centric. - The insert can stand alone as its own fundraising piece. @rkdfundraising
  111. 111. Coast Guard Foundation Guardian’s Circle 111 @rkdfundraising
  112. 112. Special Treatment for Special Donors 112 To lift mid-level response consider: - Closed-face outer envelope, first-class stamp. - Addition of personalized handwriting on letter or card. - Personalized CRE. - Postage on CRE. - Personalized reply. @rkdfundraising
  113. 113. American Kidney Fund Triple It Mailing 113 Voucher Control Simplified Test @rkdfundraising
  114. 114. Simple = Success 114 When crafting offer: - Never give the donor “cause to pause.” - Offer should fit on the head of a pin. - CTA should be direct, clear and laser-focused. - Involvement devices supporting offer and CTA should be simple, user-friendly, intuitive. - This test lifted response 34% over the voucher control. @rkdfundraising
  115. 115. Food Bank for New York City 20 Cents Mailing 115 @rkdfundraising
  116. 116. Leverage the Power of Donor’s Gift 116 Increase response when you: - Include a tangible offer. - Break down the donor’s giving impact as finite as possible. - Use visuals that reinforce offer. - This 20 cents per meal test lifted response 14% over traditional $1 = 5 meals control. @rkdfundraising
  117. 117. Brigham and Women’s Hospital Partner Card Mailing 117 @rkdfundraising
  118. 118. Test a Partner Card to Increase Response 118 • Partner cards generate a feeling of inclusiveness. • Showing the card through a secondary outer envelope window can lift response, but so can . . . • A standard third class outer envelope, capitalizing on the “what’s inside?” factor. • Test, test, test. @rkdfundraising
  119. 119. Lurie Children’s Hospital First Class Annual Fund Drive Mailing 119 @rkdfundraising
  120. 120. A Little Extra Can Go a Long Way 120 A hint of color, a simple teaser, an executive’s name. Use modest first- class mailing carrier additions to: - Lift response. - Add visual points of interest while maintaining personal atmospherics. @rkdfundraising
  121. 121. Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund “Night” Mailing 121 @rkdfundraising
  122. 122. Breakthrough Ideas Can Be Easiest to Miss 122 • What’s your organization’s “story”? How is it unique? • What nugget of history or aspect of outreach might the donor find interesting and worthy of support? • What does staff take for granted that may move a donor or prospect toward giving? @rkdfundraising
  123. 123. St. Labre Indian School Embossed Carrier 123 @rkdfundraising
  124. 124. Think Different, Mail Different 124 • Crazy is as crazy does. • Ask yourself, “What wouldn’t we do?” • For a moment, pretend there is no budget or deadline. @rkdfundraising
  125. 125. Premium Mailings 125 @rkdfundraising
  126. 126. Premium Mailings 126 • If your file is premium-driven, embrace it, but not at the exclusion of testing less expensive options. @rkdfundraising
  127. 127. 127 Los Angeles Mission Summer of Hope Regionalization More than a mention of <<AREA NAME>> @rkdfundraising
  128. 128. 128 CONTROL TEST @rkdfundraising
  129. 129. THANK YOU 129