Direct Mail Writing Techniques Improves Fundraising Effectiveness

Building a direct mail program starts with understanding your donors and writing a compelling mail pieces. There are many writing techniques you can use to increase effectiveness. According to Benjamin Hart’s Fund Your Cause with Direct Mail, grabbing the attention of our donor is key.  

Here are three suggested mailings from Hart’s book that your organization can test to improve direct mail effectiveness:

  • Survey Mailing: 

    • Including a survey in your direct mail piece can be a technique to learn more about your donors. You can ask what they care about or what they are excited about. This way you can learn what other appeals you may want to write about down the road. Surveys usually have a higher response rate in direct mail, because people love to share their opinion.  
    • Keep the survey brief and easy. The entire package should be leading the donor to answer the survey first and give a donation second. You want your donor to feel like their voice is important. 
  • Membership Appeal Mailing: 

    • People love to feel like a part of something bigger than themselves. Providing the opportunity to become a member of your organization can be an effective way to increase response rates. You can send physical membership cards for annual giving clubs, etc. Name your giving clubs with something that is important to your donors. 
  • $1 Bill Mailing: 

    • These mailings are more expensive on the front end, but they grab your donors attention. In this mailing, you include a real dollar bill or real coins. In the mailing, state you did this in order to gain their attention and show the importance of donating to your organization.  
    • Your reply envelopes should give your donors the option to just return the $1 or to return it with an additional donation. For both, it is imperative that the appeal within the letter is strong and tied to a specific project.   

Once you start to see the response to these mailings, use response analysis to evaluate what type of mail your donors are more likely to respond to. Julep has tools you can use to manage your direct mail program effectively and with ease.  Want to learn more? Schedule a Julep demo today! 

Source: Benjamin Hart’s Fund Your Cause with Direct Mail