Direct Mail for Non Profits – Some of the Best Practices

Direct mail is the best way to engage people and get in touch with donors who cannot be connected easily through email. As per CMO Council statistics, 70% of Americans feel direct mail is more personal form of communication. But making it work for you isn’t a simple task.

So, here are some of the best practices that will ensure success in your direct mail marketing campaign.

Have a Meaningful Cause

It may look silly to point out, but it is important. Before deciding the cause for the fundraising campaign, ask yourself these questions:

•  What inspires people to donate their earnings to another person’s cause?

•  How do people choose from hundreds of social causes to donate from their limited resources?

When you know the answers to the above mentioned questions, you will know how to select a meaningful cause for the fundraising campaign. It is necessary that people easily connect with the social cause of the fundraising.

Focus on the Letter

To get better results, you need to understand, how the recipient of direct mail reads your letter. The recipient does not read every word written in the letter. The first thing a recipient will see is his/her name, so don’t forget to mention right salutation in the headline.

The second thing recipient sees is who signed the letter. Thereafter, the recipient will read the Post-script or PS.

Hence, don’t forget to include a compelling message in your PS which can encourage the recipient to read the copy. All elements of the letter should have a compelling message that should appear like an emotional call of help to the recipient.By paying attention to these pointers your strategy of raising funds through direct mail for non profits will be a success.

Direct Mail for Non Profits - Some of the Best PracticesA Good Mailing List

The success of direct mail for non-profits highly depends on the mailing list. A good mailing list should include high-quality donors only. The list should have updated addresses as mailing to wrong addresses will not get you donations.

The basic rule you can follow is mailing to people who respond to direct mail. Don’t send mails to anyone and everyone in the list as it is wastage of money and time.

Include a Self Addressed Stamped Envelope (SASE)

Your letter might be convincing. But, how do you expect the donors to send their donations? A self addressed stamped envelope is essential for fundraising through direct mail for nonprofits. You should make responding easy and SASE helps you achieve that. Alternatively, you can direct donors to your website.

Encourage People for Participation

People do not want only fundraising mails in their mailbox.  They will feel happy if you appreciate them not just for their money. Talk to your donors and learn about their expectations. You can send them letters offering volunteering opportunities where they witness and experience the work your nonprofit organization does.

You can inform your dedicated donors about different events and encourage their participation. You can keep people interested in your social work by giving them updates on programs and initiatives. Keeping people engaged and interested will help you get donations.

Right Number of Communications

People do not like to be flooded with mails, especially mails asking for donations. Even when you get a good response rate, don’t overwhelm donors with too many mails. Speak to your donors. Ask them how frequently they would like to receive direct mails. They will appreciate your concern and respond positively.

Test and Measure

Sending direct mail without tracking results is a big no-no.  Without tracking results, you will not be able to capitalize on the opportunity. Track things like

1.  How many mails are returned?

2.  How many people respond to the mail?

3.  Number of donations

4.  Types of responses (Yes/No)

5.  Cost of sending batch of letters and donation amount received.

The best practices mentioned above will bring lucrative results in your direct mail for non profits fundraising initiative.

Did we miss any best practice in direct mail for non-profits fundraising campaign? What strategy do you follow to get maximum responses? Do you have any questions? Please feel free to leave your comments below and thanks for reading!