Now, fresh research by Blackbaud shows how far digital fundraising has fallen:
This is how, in their 2010 report, Blackbaud summarized the trend their data reflected then:
"Five years in, it is clear that direct mail giving is still the overwhelming majority of fund-raising revenue, and organizations must find ways to optimize multi-channel giving versus hyper-focusing on Internet giving alone." Now, almost a decade later, it bears repeating: direct mail is a critical tool!
Marketing and fundraising expert Herschell Gordon Lewis added his perspective on digital fundraising in the NonProfit Times. Of social media giving he wrote:
"Response rates for Facebook ads are an almost inconceivably small 1/20 of 1 percent. That's one response per 2,000 message recipients. It doesn't begin to compete with even the weakest conventional medium."
Doctoral studies at Claremont Graduate University's Peter F. Drucker School of Management and the School of Educational Studies compared real handwriting with two alternative methods: computer simulated handwriting and conventional type mailed in a window envelope. A dissertation chapter by High Touch founder, Frank Dickerson, presents the data illustrating the impact of Computer HandScript on direct mail results. The test measured effects of handwriting in campaigns the American Heart Association sent to more than a million households in order to test these three direct mail package styles: 1.) Using the organization's conventional window envelope with a typed address from the letter showing through the window, 2.) Using real human handwriting, and 3.) Using Computer HandScript simulated handwriting. You can download this report and peruse several studies on the language and the paralanguage of fund raising posted on Dr. Dickerson's academic research site: www.TheWrittenVoice.org.
Or just click here to download an article that summarizes a chapter from my doctoral dissertation: A Case Summary of a million-household mailing by American Heart Association.
Special thanks to Sherry Minton and Renee Warner of American Heart Association, who supplied data for Dr. Diclerson's doctoral research, which was conducted at The Peter F. Drucker & Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management and Claremont Graduate University School of Educational Studies. Here's the bottom line of these tests:
HandScript-personalization increased response over American Heart's usual window-envelope package by 346%.
Sample Executive Note Card Cover:
(A-6 size--6" x 9" folds to 4-1/2" x 6")
Standard Outgoing Envelope:
(A-6 size--4-3/4" x 6-1/2")
Above shown with three upgrades:
· prints in color
· full personalization
Above shown with three standard features:
· prints in black
· no salutation
· no personalization
Upgraded Card Inside:
We get mail opened and read because we address envelopes and write notes on cards and letters
in computer-simulated handwriting. It looks authentic because it's crafted from real handwriting!
Conventional Font & HandScript Personalization:
(A-6 size--6" x 9" folds to 4-1/2" x 6")
Reply Envelope and Reply Device:
(3-1/2" x 6" Envelope & 3-1/4" x 5-3/4" Reply Device)
79% of donors on file gave through only one channel. They raise most of their funds through direct mail. And this was the finding among the study's organizations described as being tech-savvy.
Only 10% of gifts for these technically progressive nonprofits were made online.
The report noted that among organizations with less-sophisticated online programs: "Analysis involving a wider range of nonprofits shows only 7.6% of revenue is given online."
That means for the typical nonprofit 81.4% of their revenue comes from direct mail.
Plus, those who gave online had often been led to an Internet giving portal by a direct mail letter.
While online giving is here to stay and is important, you've got to keep using U.S. mail monthly.
And as 2020 approaches Direct Mail is vital!
1. Mail sent to the perfect list written in perfect prose that frames the perfect offer and illustrates it with perfect art won't raise a penny if the envelope doesn't get opened.
2. The most expensive mailing you'll ever send is the one that doesn't to get opened.
We don't use fake handwriting fonts. Instead, we create an alpha-numeric character set from samples of your own handwriting. Or if you prefer, you may use of the standard handwriting styles in our library. We have more than 80 to choose from. And because each was made from samples of real handwriting, it looks real because it is real.
Basic High Touch Letters and Executive Note or Seasonal Cards Include:
So, to paraphrase Mark Twain:“News of direct mail’s death has been greatly exaggerated!”
Standard Card Inside:
· seasonal or year-end fund appeals · special sales offers · donor cultivation notes · customer loyalty notes
Copyright © High Touch Communication | firstname.lastname@example.org | 7412 Club View Drive, Suite 200 | Highland, CA 92346 | 909-864-2798
We help our clients increase response to fund-raising and marketing campaigns by adding a human touch to direct mail and electronic communication. We address envelopes in a simulated handwriting style called Computer HandScript that looks absolutely authentic because we create it from samples of real human handwriting. It always gets mail opened. And we build fund-raising and sales campaigns that tell compelling stories.
A High Touch Letter, Executive Note, or Greeting Card, printed on paper and sent by postal mail, is still the best way to make an impression. It adds the human ballast that's missing from a truncated Twitter tweet, text message, or email.
With the typical nonprofit having less than half of its donors' email addresses, not to mention the steadily plummeting open rate for electronic communication, old-fashioned snail mail remains the best way to ensure that your message reaches your audience.
A High Touch Letter or Card can as much as double response because the envelope almost always gets opened.
No . . . we can't predict or promise your results. But of two things you can be absolutely certain . . .