6 Tips for Nonprofits Aiming to (Successfully) Fundraise with Direct Mail

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We work with organizations from just about every industry to help provide solutions in graphic design, print, and direct mail. Over years of experience here in WNY, we have established relationships with some of the most impactful nonprofits around town, and we aim to continue to develop new relationships that help make a difference. 

Nonprofit appeal letters are an art form, and partnering with the right direct mail company can make a major difference in the performance and ROI of your campaign. Today on the blog, we wanted to touch on a few high-level tips to help nonprofits in Buffalo and beyond better understand fundraising with direct mail.

Here are 6 things to consider if you’re planning a direct mail appeal for your WNY nonprofit.

Harness the Power of Data

Be Creative

Champion Donors

Show, Don’t Tell

Make Sure It’s Easy

Test, Measure, Test, Learn

Harness the Power of Data

Personalizing your message to the receiver is an easy task, but with the power of solid data, you can ensure your direct mail campaign is personalized for each individual based on a bevy of different factors. Variable data printing allows you to introduce your salutation personally, and even provide evidence and gratitude of a particular recipient’s past donations. Data can also help you understand where to target, when to target, and how to target.

Be Creative

Making a compelling appeal case requires creativity. Nobody wants to make a donation or take action on a boring, dry appeal campaign with no personal touch or ingenuity. Be sharp and tactful in your messaging, but be sure to think “outside the box” with regard to your design. How else can you use your envelope, forms, brochures, and other supporting materials to enhance your ability to connect with and engage a potential donor? 

Champion Your Potential Donors (and Past Donors)

Make your recipient feel as though they can significantly make an impact with a donation, even a small one. Asking for money isn’t easy, but by providing a creative approach to crafting the written aspects of your appeal you can use language to champion potential donors or make them feel as though they are the star for what they can achieve by donating. Leave no questions as to what their donation will do for your organization. Celebrate donors who have donated in the past by demonstrating gratitude and providing evidence of what their past donations helped achieve.

Show, Don’t Tell

Keep your messaging simple and concise. Show your donors WHY it’s a great idea to donate. Show them HOW their donation will help. Show them WHAT their donation is going to provide. Reduce your message to as few words as possible, to avoid “telling” your recipient why, what, and how they can donate. By providing a clear and concise message, coupled with creative design, your message is more likely to be received with warm regards. 

Make Sure It’s Easy

If possible, include a self-addressed envelope or means of replying by mail that is as easy, and allows a donor to seamlessly respond. Consider other means of donation, like a memorable URL or QR code that takes the user directly to a donation page. Essentially, make donating as easy as possible for your appeal recipients.

Read More: 10 Ways to Reduce Direct Mail Cost

Test, Measure, Test, Learn

No matter the success, you can ALWAYS learn from a campaign. Once your campaign is completed, take time to digest what worked, what didn’t, who responded and who didn’t, and how you can improve. Seek feedback and remain open to constructive criticism. Experience often comes in the form of failure, and learning from mistakes can create success. The more tracking measures you have in place, the better you will be able to track your success. Each campaign should be an evolution of your last, and never stop learning from the results!

We hope these tips help nonprofits out there better understand how they could be more successful with appeal letter fundraising. We work with some truly amazing organizations here in Buffalo and WNY to help them achieve success through direct mail and variable data printing. If you or someone you know is finding challenges in fundraising for your nonprofit, please don’t hesitate to reach out via phone or by our contact form. We are more than willing to help answer your questions, and are confident we can assist you in making your next appeal the best yet!

 

We’re here to help with any of your needs, just drop us a line.

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