My Fall Mailbox

My Fall Mailbox

Like many of you, my mailbox is stuffed with nonprofit appeals between October 1st and December 31st. Here is a recap of the direct mail I received this year, and the insights I noted: • I received an even 50 pieces of direct mail. Thirty-five pieces were appeals from 11 organizations I have previously supported, while 15 pieces were new donor acquisition kits. • Sadly, direct mail with nonprofit postage arrived all on the same day of the week. It appears that the Post Office holds all of your direct mail and then efficiently bulk delivers it. This is a killer for nonprofit organizations, as their appeal must compete with all the other messages delivered that day. It may be worth testing the use of first-class postage in fourth quarter acquisition next year, to limit direct competition in the same mailbox. • I received the most pieces from The Salvation Army (14) – though half of them were duplicates. I have supported The Army in two different Divisions, both of which sent me identical appeals. I contacted one Division about this issue last year, but the message must not have reached the right people. • I received 7 appeals from my local PBS station. • All the other organizations I have sent money to in the past sent me between 1 and 3 pieces of direct mail – probably reflecting my lapsed status . . . • World Vision sent me the only two catalogs I received. The sole difference between them was the cover. It appears we are in a down cycle for catalogs, as I used to...
Fundraising Trends for 2019

Fundraising Trends for 2019

Last week, Analytical Ones completed its survey of fundraising professionals to gain insights on trends for 2019. Overall, the outlook among fundraising professionals is mixed. As many expect a good year as those who are forecasting it will not be a good year. As one respondent stated, a good year may come down to planning: “Modest growth will come to organizations with strategic fundraising programs.”   When asked about the most important trend in fundraising for 2019, it was unsurprising that the stock market’s recent downturn was top of mind. Half of the respondents identified this as the most important trend for the coming year. The two other second-tier trends mentioned in the survey were: Fundraising Channels, and the Tax Law changes. Here are two of the direct quotes from the fundraising professionals who took the survey: “A global recession could cause a significant impact on giving.” “Whether people will begin to bundle donations and not give every year, but change to another giving pattern.”   External forces lead the responses when participants were asked about their biggest concern for the coming year. In short, fundraising professionals have many concerns right now. We all know in times of uncertainty, donors tend to give less. Let’s hope our panel is wrong, but the general consensus is that it may be a bumpy...