If you’re a nonprofit, you know how critical direct mail is to your fundraising. In fact, according to MobileCause, donors are three times more likely to give online in response to a direct mail appeal than an email. Here are five tips to maximize your efforts.
1. Invest in your house list.
Treated right, most people who donate to an organization will do so again. That’s why your house list is the most essential list you have. Keep this list up to date, and treat your donors like the most important people in the world… because they are.
2. Prospecting is an important second.
Purchasing a relevant direct mail list is critical to bringing in new donors who care about your mission. Remember, however, that it will not be your primary source of donations. Prospecting helps to expand your donor base, but your house list is the primary source of your fundraising dollars.
3. Create a personal connection.
Studies show that the most critical factor in a person’s likelihood to donate is their personal connection to the organization. Speak to each donor by name. If they have donated before, reference previous donations and thank them for their generosity. In each communication, ensure your donors know exactly who you are, your core mission, and how their money will be used.
4. Tell a story.
Use the power of print to tell a story about your cause. Provide pictures or stories about the ways their donations will be invested. If your mission focuses on people, show photos of real people benefiting from your projects. Show pictures of neighborhoods, villages, and schools. Don’t just tell donors how their donations are making a difference. Show them!
5. Keep it current.
If people donate to a specific ongoing project, keep them in the loop on the progress. Send regular updates and progress reports. Create excitement about the next step in the process and how their donations are helping your organization to get there.
People want to help and enjoy being part of the effort to do good for the world around them. Use direct mail to make them feel part of your mission, and they will open their hearts and wallets to continue to be a part of it.