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Using Direct Mail Campaigns to Increase Donations

How to Increase Donations with 5 Sure-Fire Direct Mail Tactics

In good and bad economic times, achieving your fundraising goals is essential. Not knowing how to increase donations to hit the numbers you need puts your mission in jeopardy. You know what failure could mean – reprioritizing initiatives, delaying, or abandoning them altogether. 

Fortunately, we are sharing 5 proven direct mail services for nonprofit organizations to help fundraising managers hit those all-important goals. 

How to Increase Donations with Direct Mail

We’ve shared many statistics about the effectiveness of direct mail – so you know it gets great results. Here’s a variation – 

Direct mail is 37 times more effective than email response rates according to the Direct Mail Association. 

The smart money says to go with direct mail. According to recent statistics, 42% of recipients read their direct mail and it hangs around the household for an average of 17 days which gives all members of the household time to review it. Explaining sustained giving options may have a better chance to be read and understood in a carefully crafted letter. 

Now that you know how direct mail will deliver, what should you do with it?

How to increase donations senior in blue shirt with envelopes in hands#1 – How to Increase Donations? Reach Out to Current Donors

You’ve heard the old saying that it’s easier to sell a customer than a prospect. Well, the same is true of your current donors. 

Because your donors have shown they are aligned with your mission and want to help your organization achieve it by donating before, they don’t have to be convinced. This group is the most likely mail recipient to give during your next campaign. Yet, it’s easy to overlook them. 

If it’s awkward to start the conversation with someone who has already been generous to your organization, just say thank you for their past support and invite them to continue that support.

#2 – How to Increase Donations? – Use Targeted Lists

Your nonprofit probably knows the type of donor who is the most generous and consistent in their donations to your organization. Create a custom list and use the donor segments that have worked best for you – or send variations of your campaign letter to current, lapsed, and long-lapsed donors to increase donations. 

Sustainer Giving

Instead of requesting a large contribution, consider sending lapsed donors a sustained giving proposal that’s built from their prior giving history. For instance, if they’ve routinely given $200 a quarter, you can suggest they pledge $70 a month to make donations more manageable. 

Major Donors

Send a separate communication to your largest donors, who have a bigger stake in your organization. They may be more interested in special initiatives, the benefits, and how you will use their money. In addition to a special message, the communication may require higher quality stationery. 

Want to know how to increase donations from new major donors? Target high-income neighborhoods on customized lists as 93% of these women donate to nonprofits while 87% of men also donate.

How to increase donations personalized envelope web 1#3 – Personalize Your Marketing to Increase Donations

Nearly every business influencer and sales guru, from Dale Carnegie to today’s experts, know the power of using a person’s name. It immediately draws the reader’s attention and provides a personalized feeling to the mailer. 

When you’re approaching a donor – current or new – with the reasons why they should donate to your cause, using their name can be influential. 

Fortunately, with today’s digital marketing printing solutions, the cost of personalization, sometimes called variable data printing, is much more affordable, making it a must-do!  

#4 – Pro Tip: Use Reply Devices

This is simply a way to make it easier for the recipient to act. A mail-back card and a pre-addressed envelope can encourage donors to include a check or complete a form to demonstrate their commitment to donate on a regular schedule.

Why is a pre-stamped, pre-addressed envelope so important? With a marked decrease in mailing (in 2000 there were 103,526,000,000+ mailed; in 2020 it was nearly half the volume, 52,624,000,000) what’s the likelihood that your recipient doesn’t have an envelope or first-class stamp?

Why take the chance that a well-meaning donor wants to give, but they have to get stationery supplies or go to the post office to do it? How many will set aside the letter with the intention of getting back to it, and then forget it? Instead, make it easy for donors to give. 

How to increase donations opening a thank you note web#5 – How to Increase Donations – Keep in Touch with Donors

Even if you’re between donor campaigns, keep in touch with your donors to let them know how their donations have made a difference within your organization. Keeping them connected to the organization can make it easier for donors to say “Yes” to your next campaign. 

This step applies to lapsed donors, too. If you’re reluctant to stay in touch, keep in mind that you don’t know why they stopped donating to your nonprofit. It may be that they lost their job – fortunately for many, this is a temporary situation. Put your nonprofit front and center when they’re ready to give again. 

These 5 steps can help your nonprofit to have the best chance of increasing donations in good economic times and not-so-good times. Partnering with a direct mail campaign and print experts with nonprofit experience, like One Stop Marketing can make your campaigns easier to execute and your goals easier to achieve. 

Contact us or give us a call at 602.962.9243 to find out just how committed we are to helping you hit your big goals. 

OSM Blog Effective direct mail campaign

Effective Direct Mail Campaigns Repeat Themselves

There’s an adage that says doing the same thing and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity. But what is it called when you repeat behavior that has given you great results to get the same good results? I call it genius, especially when it comes to effective direct mail campaigns.   

Sharp business owners know that repeated mailings can be successful, but that doesn’t mean sending out the same cards with the same messages to the same clients. Sending duplicate offers too many times could result in diminishing results.  

Let’s explore why you want to do repeat mailings and the strategies that you, as a business owner can use to elevate your success with each mailing. First, why would you want to mail, then repeat your mailings? 

Effective Direct Mail Campaigns Pay You 

Despite the proliferation of digital marketing, there’s data that shows that direct mail delivers a bigger return than email marketing. Did you know that direct mail sent to house lists had a 9% response rate and a prospect list yielded a 4.9% response? That’s great compared to email, which got a 1% response rate.  

With response rates like that, who wouldn’t want to repeat their mailings? There are other benefits to mailing customers multiple times.  

Brand Visibility 

effective direct mail campaigns man with laptop opening mail webIn marketing, there’s a theory that a prospect must encounter your brand an average of seven times before they are ready to purchase. This theory is creatively called The Rule of 7.  

Whether or not effective direct mail campaigns will get results after the seventh mailing isn’t the point. The point is, when you’re introducing your business or service to a new prospect, you can’t just expect them to whip out their wallet. You need to woo them and get them comfortable with your brand. Multiple mailings will help.  

Build Credibility 

If you’re a new business or new to an area, you must start from scratch. New prospects can’t rely on word-of-mouth recommendations from neighbors or the presumption of reliability that comes with decades in business.  

When you’re the new kid on the block, you must be noticed before you can ask for a seat at the popular table. This means you must trade a piece of chocolate cake for a mushy apple a couple of times to get invited to the popular table. What that means is a tasty offer mailed several times – at least three in my experience, after your prospect has heard from you at least once.  

Beat the Competition 

If you have business competitors, it’s a matter of getting in front of a targeted audience before the other guys do. That means mailing more frequently. A postcard delivered on the right day can make all the difference.  

Take Advantage of the Novelty 

effective direct mail campaigns woman reading a flyer webDid you know that mail volume has been steadily declining in volume each year since 2006? It was 213 billion units in 2006 and in 2020 it was only 129.2 billion units of mail.  

For direct mailers like me, this isn’t bad news – it’s an opportunity! In 2006, there were nearly double the mail in the mailbox and you had to stand out among heavier competition. Today, it’s half that amount and more of your competitors are online.  

Now, holding your colorful oversized is unique, a novelty – and your business stands out.  

Additional Steps for an Effective Direct Mail Campaign

Planning an effective direct mail campaign includes strategies for multiple mailings. This includes the type of mailer you choose, the strategic positioning of each mailing, offers, and lists. If this all feels too overwhelming, no worries. One Stop Mail has a team full of experts who can help you navigate the intricacies of direct mail.  

And, if you need design services or list expertise, we have that, too. Just contact us or give us a call at 602.962.5104. 

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What to Look For in a Direct Mail Company: A Checklist

Top 3 Things Everyone Should Look For In A Direct Mail Company

Sifting through all of the direct mail marketing companies out there can be time-consuming. How do you determine if one is better than the other? Keeping these three key criterion top of mind will make sure that you can pick the best company that will meet your direct mail marketing needs.

They Have A Track Record of Success

This is a key indicator if a company is even worth pursuing. More often than not, you can usually see what sort of clients they have worked with in past on their website. Even if you do see them on their website, one of your first questions should be: what sort of clients have you worked with in the past and what results did you generate for them? This is the first hurdle that they must jump over successfully to garner your attention.

OSM AChecklist

They are Reasonably Priced

Only you know what sort of budget you have to work with. That is why price should be one of the key things you ask up front. That way you aren’t surprised later down the road when you think you have found your ideal direct mail company.

You should also consider what you will be getting for your money. One of the things that One Stop Mail offers their customers is variable data printing, which is a cost-effective way to cater each direct mail piece to a specific individual. In this day and age, personalization is the name of the game. At the end of the day, you want to make sure your buck is going towards real results.

They Understand Your Needs

One of the simplest yet important things a direct mail company should do for you is to not only grasp your unique circumstance but also back up that understanding with a solution. They must be willing to work with you to develop strategies, test them and measure outcomes, and make changes to optimize results so that they can gain bigger, better sales for your business. Your own situation will require “unique strategies,” so make sure that you are not only explaining everything clearly but they are taking in what you are saying.

Choose Wisely and Expect Fine Tuning

If you think you have found the best company for the job, don’t expect magic overnight. Direct mail marketing, and really, marketing in general, requires a bit of trial and error. Many people get uncomfortable with this because they don’t want their money to be wasted. But the fact of the matter is your money is not being wasted. It is being used to find the most successful areas to target so that you don’t get lukewarm results. The only way to do this is to test and analyze the data. If you have done your direct mail company research well enough, you should not have anything to worry about.

If you’re looking for a direct marketing company with experience in all aspects of direct mail, including mail lists, quality printing and graphic design,  is committed to your success and is reasonably priced, you don’t have to look any further than One Stop Mail. We’ll get to know your goals, your audience and do all that we can to help you achieve your goals. Call us at 602.932.7984 or send us a note.

OSM SM Post Build a targeted mailing list

Building Targeted Mailing Lists To Better Understand Your Target Customer

Every direct mail campaign relies on targeted mailing lists. You need to know who you are mailing to personalize your mailings and utilize best practices. The first step starts with a little hard work, and that involves compiling the data you already have on hand. With this data, you can understand who your biggest purchasers are and determine similarities between each individual so that you can target other customers like them in the future more effectively.

Put Your Own Data in Targeted Mailing Lists

The first step should be determining who is your target customer. You can do this by reviewing past customers and start building targeted mailing lists from the ground up. When you do this, you should pay special attention to commonalities between customers so you can start constructing customer profiles. These profiles will give you a snapshot of your various customers and empower your marketing campaigns with all of the unique data that segments these individuals.

Now, every customer is unique. To say that a certain segment of your customer base is identical is a little misleading. You will most likely end up with a lot of different kinds of customer profiles, and there will be subtle differences that make each purchase just a little bit different. But this is where your hard work comes in since it’s your job to find where the data may overlap.

Though it may seem like a no-brainer, it is important just to focus on the customers that generated the most revenue for your business in some way—at least at first. Your other customers are important too, but initially, you should focus first on the profile that will help you target the most lucrative prospects.

What To Do With Your Profiles and Mail List

Although the goal is to ultimately understand your target audience, these profiles and mailing list can serve to inform many of your marketing decisions. You can break the mailing list down, if you haven’t already, by each individual’s purchase history so you can find trends in their buying habits to improve any marketing that targets past customers. You can also use these lists to help you form a reminder campaign, which is particularly relevant to any business that is appointment based.

Another common practice businesses use is after they have put in all of the hard work of building your their mailing list to determine their ideal customer, they take this vital information and go purchase a clone mailing list.  A clone mailing list is a collection of prospects that fit the customer profile you have developed. This is why it is important to focus on the customers who have purchased the most from your business since this new set of similar prospects will have a greater potential of bringing in large amounts of revenue.

If you’re new to building targeted mail lists or haven’t had much success,we at One Stop Mail can help. We are direct marketing experts and will  discuss your goals for your campaign and can offer consumer, B2B and customized lists. If you’d like help with the campaign itself, we develop the marketing materials and deploy the materials for you. Simply call 602.806.8775 or reach out to us, we’re here to help.