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Jan 14, 2019

Improving the Acquisition Experience

Allegories for Unintegrated Direct Mail Acquisition Testing Activities:
• Tailor fitting a funeral suit
• Climbing a tall ladder on a building that’s on fire
• Planting orange trees above the freeze line

Don’t get me wrong. I love direct mail. But sometimes, context matters.

Spending hours and hours coming up with new ideas on how to beat your direct mail acquisition control kit is probably not the best use of your time right now – especially if you aren’t integrating your direct mail with other media campaigns.

Realistically, moving your direct mail acquisition response rate from 0.36% to 0.56% isn’t going to solve all your problems. New donor acquisition is a long-term problem, and you need an integrated solution.

I suggest, this time, you stick with your tried and true acquisition kit. Reinvest the time and resources you’d otherwise spend in direct mail testing protocols into brainstorming ways to engage a new audience that’s completely different.

I know from a career standpoint that seems bold. That everyone knows you can’t get fired for doing the “safe” thing. But as you can tell by looking at our stock market, there are no safe things right now. These new layers to an old problem require innovative solutions.

So be bold. Test something that’s never been tried – and then tell us about it.

Fundraising Forward

Postage rates and problematic delivery are making me rethink how fundraising might need to adapt moving forward. In 2024, First Class postage is a whopping 73 cents (who knew when those “forever” stamps don’t put the amount on them?) and nonprofit postage is between...

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Test First Class Postage this Fall

One of the disturbing USPS trends – other than raising the cost of postage every year – is the bulk delivery of appeal letters with nonprofit postage. Over the past year, when I check my mailbox for the appeal letters I’m seeded on, I have noticed that I receive all...

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Top 5 Mistakes: #1 Stopping New Donor Acquisition

I have been analyzing the fundraising business for nearly three decades and over the years I keep seeing nonprofit organizations making the same mistakes. These errors hold organizations back. If you are new to fundraising, please commit yourself to avoiding these...

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