For better results on your next mailing, tune in to what the numbers from your last mailing are telling you.
by Aryeh Zev Narrow
Guest blogger Aryeh Zev Narrow (Spring Valley, NY) helps non-profits make more money by communicating better with their donors. Aryeh Zev works with small-to-mid-sized charities that want world-class marketing communications, but might not be able to afford (or prefer not to work with) big-dollar marketing agencies. Learn more about non-profit marketing and fundraising messages on Aryeh Zev’s blog: The Spark*. You can contact him at az at aznarrow dot com.
Numbers drive our business.
Those of us in the direct mail (or email) business obsess over ROI’s, RFD’s and costs per thousand.
Marketers test, measure, re-focus, repeat. Results are measured and compared to the fraction of a percent. Every direct marketing campaign is guided by past results and industry “best practices”—rules of thumb for design, format, content, etc.
But because numbers drive our business, our business will never be any better than the numbers we use. Need better results? Get better numbers.
Those of us who try to raise money by mail (or email) must understand what our results are telling us. In the 10 years I’ve been helping non-profits communicate better, I’ve seen that some important numbers are not so well understood… or not so easily calculated.
About a year ago, I created a spreadsheet to help an organization understand its direct mail results.
· Response rate
· Average donation
· Net revenue per list
· ROI per list
· The cost to raise $1
· The cost to acquire each new donor.
Be clear: know where results are up and where they’re down. See at a glance which list performed, and which one didn’t. Have clear answers and detailed data at your fingertips when discussing your fundraising programs with the board or with supporters.
The numbers from your last campaign have a story to tell. Use he Direct Mail Fundraising ROI Calculator to hear them loud and clear.
Written and compiled by: Denny Hatch
A sampling of 10 basic marketing rules:
1. “Always make it easy to order.” —Elsworth Howell
2. Always ask for an order.
3. Always make an offer.
4. “The right offer should be so attractive, only a lunatic would say no.” —Claude Hopkins
5. “If you want to dramatically increase your response, dramatically improve your offer.” —Axel Andersson
6. “The wickedest of all sins is to run an advertisement without a headline.” —David Ogilvy
7. “On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your advertising dollar.” —David Ogilvy
8. “Your best lede is usually to be found somewhere on the second page of your first draft.” —Pat Friesen
9. “Short words. Short sentences. Short paragraphs.” —Andrew J. Byrne
10. “Human nature is perpetual. In most respects it is the same today as in the time of Caesar. So the principles of psychology are fixed and enduring. You will never need to unlearn what you learn about them.” —Claude Hopkins
Source: Nike Football Turkey, YouTube.com page http://www.youtube.com/user/NikeFootballTurkiye
Featured Article: “Direct marketers should not lose sight of what’s important in the rush to the new”
I just read this article byand it really hit home with me.
I’m not saying that the newer formats have no place, because they do have a place, but I am an advocate for integrated marketing and sticking with what works and not moving to the new for the sake of new.
In a way we can get caught up in the new. Like the person who owns the iPhone 5 and who waits in line 3 days just to buy the new gold iPhone 5s simply because it’s newer. Lot’s of people want (they think they need) the newest and latest thing. In reality they do not.
Older marketing methods are still working and will continue to work in the foreseeable future.
“Augmented reality, QR codes, social media, mobile et al all dominate attention and are afforded a disproportionate to use amount of time in terms of copy and discussion.”
“For many people and in many circumstances traditional is still the best. It might not win any innovation awards but sometimes a piece of mail is best, sometimes a phone call (read a previous missive on the benefits of cold calling here) is best and sometimes a knock on the door can work.”
We’re making some changes to the copy on our website, negevdirect.com. Mostly for SEO purposes. I’m going to add a sentence or two on each list type page to explain what sort of lists are on that page.
My question is whether or not I should use some humorous copy on our website to describe each list type?
Our site is interesting in that we draw both older school B2B direct mail people, some of whom are agencies and consultants. We also draw from a wide range of direct marketers looking to reach the Jewish market. So really, all in all, we have some new school people and some old schoolers looking at our website.
I want us to be seen as new school and on the front end of the traditional field of direct mail. I don’t think I want to be too edgy in the copy, but I do want to push the envelope just a little bit.
So, let me throw it back at you and ask you: If you were to write a humorous and just a little edgy sentence or two about these four list categories: All Jewish Lists, Jewish Email Lists, Jewish Mailing Lists and Jewish Telemarketing Lists – what would you write?
I like how Marc Pitman, (t:@marcapitman)Ffundraising Coach extraordinaire takes the opportunity to have some fun by describing a new program of his he calls the “Fundraising Kick” as “A Year of Ask Kicking Ideas” – Nice play on words and he winds up pushing the envelope, without going overboard.
Links: The Dangers of Humor – CoppyBlogger.com
Speaking of funny, this is the funniest written piece I’ve read in a LONG time - ‘Surviving Whole Foods’ – HuffingtonPost.com
featured petition: Effectively address the crackdown on civil society and serious setbacks in religious freedom conditions in Russia.
A petition to the Obama Administration:
“We write as an informal group of organizations and individuals who are scholars, religious leaders, human rights advocates and practitioners to recommend specific U.S. government actions to more effectively address the crackdown on civil society and serious setbacks in religious freedom conditions in Russia.”
“The Machal forces were the Diaspora’s most important contribution to the survival of the State of Israel.”
- David Ben-Gurion
“In 1948, a group of World War II pilots, mostly from America, volunteered to fight for Israel in the War of Independence. As members of “Machal” – volunteers from abroad – this ragtag band of brothers not only turned the tide of the war, preventing the possible annihilation of Israel at the very moment of its birth; they also laid the groundwork for the Israeli Air Force.”
Contact the film Producer: email@example.com
“Netanyahu to inaugurate fiber optic venture September 3″ “The inauguration of the ViaEuropa AB-Israel Electric Corp venture will be in Beersheva”
In keeping with the theme of Netanyahu’s quote that “The Negev will become the Israeli Silicon Valley”
— Yoav Kaufman (@yoavkaufman) August 14, 2013
It was just announced that Beersheva in the Negev region of Israel will be the first city in the country to get fiber optic wiring
— Yoav Kaufman (@yoavkaufman) August 14, 2013
Beit Issie Shapiro (BIS) is an Israeli non-profit that is working to change the negative perceptions society often has of kids with disabilities.
A BIS speaker recently spoke on the issue at the recent UN Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
BIS is setting up inclusive playgrounds around Israel with great success. In fact, “…as a result of the model park project, and with the help of the Commission for Rights of People with Disabilities, Israel requires all new parks to be accessible. Additionally, BIS is helping countries including South Africa, Uruguay, and UK to establish similar parks.”
Beit Issie Shapiro’s English website: http://en.beitissie.org.il/
BIS’s NYC Marathon Fundraiser Page: http://www.crowdrise.com/friendsofshapironyc2013/fundraiser/theamericanfriendsof3
If you have Gmail you’ve noticed recently that there has been some changes. Instead of getting all your mail to one inbox your mail is now separated into three categories: Primary, Social and Promotions.
This is where those of us that send out email campaigns for our clients might start to do this:
Not to worry. Take a deep breath. Things are not be as bad as that, for a few reasons.
1. Even though your open rates may suffer, the people who find your email in the promotions area will most likely take the time to interact with it be it through a click, an action step, etc.
2. If you are mailing to a “house” file you can encourage people to move your emails over to the “Primary” tab since if they are opting-in to get your content then your really shouldn’t be in the “Promotions” tab in the first place.
3. If you stick to what works well in designing a good looking email with a solid call to action, keep it simple and uncluttered and have a good call to action you will still have the advantage over the email marketers who’s 15 year old cousin designs their campaign in Microsoft Word.
4. People receiving emails in the “Promotions” tab now have the chance to scan and read these emails separately from the emails in their “Primary” inbox. This will give people more time and patience to sort through the promotion emails and give them the time and in some cases lack of time that they deserve. Since the emails are no longer clumped with the important stuff and they get their own space they will now get more time that just delete, delete, delete….
In short, keep an eye on your next few email campaign stats with an eye on the Gmail accounts see what if any affect the new changes have.
And breathe, don’t forget to breathe. The alternative is not so great.