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New Features Added to The Jewish Donor Blog Today!

You may notice some new changes starting today with the blog!

The updates include:

  •  New retweet button at the end of each post for easier re-tweeting to your Twitter account.
  •  New Facebook Like button at the end of each post so you can easily like our posts on Facebook.
  •  New featured video area on the sidebar with YouTube videos we think you’ll enjoy.
  •  Brand new easier to use and feature packed comments area at the end of each post to facilitate conversation and discussion on the each post topic.  Just click on the comment button at the end of a post to see the full comments area.

We would love to hear your thoughts on these new features and we will happily listen to any suggestions you have on changes that we can add to the blog going forward!

Our 400th Post!

Our last post was our 400th!  Here’s to many, many more!  Happy reading.

What Do You Think Of Negev Direct’s Brand New Logo?

We think it’s a huge improvement over the old logo!!  We’d love to hear what you think.  Ten bonus points for anyone who can post in the comment area the meaning behind the image.

Nextmark Releases 2010 Q1 Data Card Quality Report

– Negev Direct ranks # 14 out of the top 62 list managers in our category in data card quality score.

– Negev’s average data card rank is 96% out of 100%.
– Negev Direct had 205 data cards on the Nextmark system at the time of ranking (that number is up to 207 currently).
From Nextmark:

Top List Managers by Data Card Quality

Data cards are the primary documents used in circulation planning and purchasing decisions. Publishing a high quality data card maximizes the likelihood of being selected for inclusion in direct marketing campaigns. Here are the top list managers ranked by the quality of their data card portfolios as of April 7, 2010.”

Negev Manages Baltimore Jewish Times

Negev Direct Marketing is now the exclusive list manager for theBaltimore Jewish Times.

Thanks to the publisher, Alter Communications, Inc. for choosing NDM.

Baltimore Jewish Times

• Published weekly

• Paid circulation base

• 70% female audience
• Average household income of $153,830
• Average home value of $468,000
• Highly desirable paid subscriber base of
• Award winning journalism
• In continuous print since 1919

David, Yoav, Chana and the entire Negev Team

Negev Direct Acquires M2J

Negev Direct Marketing recently acquired the Jewish direct marketing company market2jews.com.

The acquisition enables Negev Direct Marketing to add to our portfolio even more targeted Jewish email and postal lists to help make your next direct marketing campaign a success.

Both companies specialize in data and list services for Jewish audiences.

“M2J is a leading provider of data and list services to the religious Jewish market – one of the fastest growing segments in the Jewish world,” said Chana Rubin, president of Negev, in a statement.

Purim Fun In Beersheva


It’s Purim 5770 today in Beersheva as it is in most all of Israel and the Diaspora.

 In honor of the topsy-turvy nature of the holiday: remembering a serious crisis in Jewish history while being playful at the same time, we have the deep honor of posting our holiday feast’s guest, Robert Klein’s, “Prayer for the Welfare of Beersheva”.
Enjoy.
“Our Father who art in Heaven, Rock of Israel and its Redeemer – Bless the City of Beersheva, the beginning of the flowering of our roasted seed-&-nut stands. Protect her with the wing of your loving-kindness, and especially protect the way-cool video sign over there at the intersection of Rager and Tuviahu streets.”

“Send your light and truth to the mayor and the deputy mayor, and the deputy mayor, and the deputy mayor, and the female deputy mayor – yes, to all four of these terribly vital deputy mayors, together with their office workers – and the nephews of their office workers, and the friends of the nephews of their office workers, and the friends of the friends of the nephews of their office workers, and the sister of the veterinarian of the dog of the friend of the friend of the nephew of one of their office workers – and set them up with a high-profile position and a good salary according to Your will.”

“Strengthen the hands of the defenders of our holy city, i.e. the Southern Region Police Force. Crown them with a crown ofvictory for the Beersheva soccer team, in reward for faithfully watching the team for many hours in the television room of the police station, and bless them with comfortable couches in that same television room, and bless them with a good living made off of the cameras which catch drivers who in actuality are going ten kilometers per hour less than the typical police car. And grant free parking throughout the city, and thusly peace to her inhabitants.”

“And our brothers, the whole House of Israel, watch over them throughout the lands of their dispersion, and speedily lead them upright to Zion your city, and to Jerusalem, the tabernacle of your renown – but if they don’t have the money for an apartment there, at least lead them upright to Beersheva your city, and lead them on her sidewalks with caution. And also lead them with clear maps, lest they fulfill what is written in the Torah of Moses your servant “And she went and got lost in the wilderness of Be’er Sheva”. (Genesis 21: 14)”

“May all the inhabitants of Beersheva merit Ruach HaKodesh (the Holy Spirit) that they might fathom the mysteries of her street system. For example, why is it that at almost every traffic light, the street name changes, but when your turn right at the Stadium from HaMeshachrerim Street, you end up on HaMeshachrcrim Street- what’s up with that?”

“Appear in the majesty of the pride of your strength to all those who are standing in line at the local post office that they shouldn’t faint, and that no broken fingernail afflict the only clerk who is, so-to-speak, ‘working’.”

“And let us all say, Amen.”

 

333 Posts Later – The JDB is Two Years Old

January 22nd, 2008 – Our very first post. January 22nd, 2010 – Our 333rd post.
Happy two year birthday to the JDB Blog! We are going on three now and that makes us pretty proud of what we have accomplished in such a short time:
– Over 14,000 views of the blog
– Over 18,000 clicks on items on the blog
– 333 Blog posts in the span of two years
To mark the occasion I am going to re-post our very first post written by David Rubin that, looking back was really forward thinking.
At Negev Direct I had the chance to see first hand that Jewish organizations that cut back altogether on donor acquisition are paying for it now in loss of donors.
Jewish Organizations that just trimmed back and still reached out to donors (instead of stopping altogether) in a scaled back and intelligent manner, are much better off now than their counterparts in terms of donations received and number of donors retained!
Here’s the jewishdonorblog.com’s very first post, only two years later. It’s called:
“Buy High, Sell Low”
It’s not what you should do, but if you are like most people, it probably is what you will do.
As I write this, stock markets around the world are crashing.
Now that prices are falling fast, many people want to sell their stocks and mutual funds as quickly as possible. These are the same people who bought when prices were high. They follow the herd.
Right over the cliff.
Being in a herd has its advantages. You keep your head down. You follow someone else’s lead. You can blame someone else when something goes wrong. And when you run off the cliff you have plenty of company.
A few smart people will see the bigger picture, think for the long term and will view this as a buying opportunity.
Call them contrarians, loners or visionaries; they are definitely not part of the herd.
What does this have to do with fundraising or marketing?
Everything.
Past experience has taught me that when there is a big stock market pullback or an economic recession, most organizations respond by following the herd: they cut back.
They cut back on expenses. Which means cutting back on mailings. Which means less contact with their contributors.
Their thinking is: if people are losing money and the economy is in shambles, people will contribute less money. So why even bother asking. Let’s just stop now and save the bother and expense.
The person who gave you $20,000 last year because his hedge fund investment paid off handsomely may not contribute anything this year because the fund has just gone broke.
On the other hand, the person who has been loyally sending $36 twice a year for the past five years is still going to contribute. And may even increase his donation.
Why?
Because he understands that when times are tough, people need even more help. And your organization is the one doing the helping.
But there’s a catch. You have to ask.
If you lower your head, run with the herd and cut back on your mailings, he’ll just give his donation to someone else.
The contrarian has the smarts to continue mailing when others pull back. The visionary sees opportunity when others see disaster. He will be the one who profits in the long run.
Will you be one of them?

NextMark Releases 4Q09 Data Card Quality Report

Top Nextmark List Managers by Data Card Quality

Negev Direct’s 4Q 09 Stats:
Ranking (out of the top 50 list companies with 100-249 titles): 17 Avg. Card Score This Qrt.
96.0
Avg Card Score Last Qrt.
96.1
%Change from Last Qrt to This Qrt
-0.1%
Number of Titles:
201

Top 5 Jewish Donor Blog Posts of 2009

The top 5 posts as far as the combined number of views and clicks on the Jewish Donor Blog for the year 2009 are, drum roll please…
If you were reading our posts throughout 2009, thank you very much for following along, we appreciate your dedication. If you’re new to our blog, we look forward to you reading along on 2010 in what will be our third year of blogging… which will make us in the prime of our blogging life!
Yoav

2009 – A Wild Year For Direct Marketing

2009 started out with a continuation and amplification of the problems that began in late 2008.

Shall we list them?
1) US and European real estate bubbles which triggered…
2) Bank collapses which brought about…
3) Stock and bond market crashes that lead to…
4) Massive government intervention in the banks and markets which caused…
5) A serious threat of deflation causing companies to lay off staff, meaning…
6) People have less money and are afraid for their economic future, therefore…
7) They give less to charity, save more and spend less

And as if that were not enough, Bernie Madoff confessed to the Mother of all Ponzi Schemes which bankrupted several Jewish private foundations and placed many well-known national Jewish organizations into deep financial crisis.

 All-in-all, it’s been a tough year.
Many Jewish organizations reacted by pulling back: cutting staff, programming and of course, fundraising budgets. Some of that was justified while their financial situations were in flux.
Many others went into panic mode, downsizing in a way that hurt their clients, their staff and their fundraising efforts. Some of the bigger mailers lost literally tens of thousands of donors from their active donor files as they stayed out of the mail and eliminated acquisition mailings.
All doom and gloom.
But things started to look up by mid-year.
There was a new administration in Washington, the capital markets began to stabilize, and before the High Holidays, Jewish organizations decided that they needed to test the waters again and bring new supporters on board during the historically best mailing cycle of the Jewish year.
And then, great news: the results were better than many had predicted. So we are seeing a good number of end-of-year/Hanukah mailings and up uptick in mailing plans for 2010.
List owners suffered, as did list managers, in 2009. Many were asked to make price concessions for mailers, while many mailers adopted a policy of using only exchanges and foregoing list rental entirely. That cut deeply into list rental revenue for 2009, but again we are looking at a return to higher levels of rentals in 2009.
On a personal level, 2009 started with Beersheva (where our offices are located) and much of the northern Negev under rocket bombardment from Gaza during the Gaza War. I’m proud to report that Negev Direct Marketing was open for business every working day during this time. The dedication of our staff and our families to our clients was really something to see and be proud of.
Looking forward, we predict a stabilized general economic situation in the United States, although unemployment will remain high for the balance of the year. People are donating again, and are looking for lean, mean, effective organizations to give their money to.
If you have not streamlined your mail or email campaigns to meet these realities, now is the time to do so.
We would like to hear from our readers about their experiences over the past year and how they view direct marketing and fundraising faring in 2010.
David

The Thanksgiving Blog

Before
Here’s a question that you have probably never asked yourself:
Is turkey Kosher?
Which is actually a legitimate question in Halacha (Jewish Law) because there is no ancient tradition of eating turkey. It’s not mentioned in the Bible or the Mishna or Talmud.

After
In fact, Jews were introduced to turkey as a food a mere (in Jewish time) 250 years ago.
The short answer is, yes, turkey has been accepted by almost all Jewish authorities as a Kosher bird.
For the long answer and a full discussion of the matter, we refer you to Kashrut.com and an article byRabbi Ari Z. Zivotofsky, Ph.D.
In Israel we don’t celebrate either American or Canadian Thanksgiving(s), but many immigrants from both the US and Canada do eat turkey around this time. Our family custom is to have Thanksgiving-style food on the Shabbat immediately following Thanksgiving.
Enjoy the holiday.
David
Completely Different

Startup Nation


That headline, believe it or not, refers to Israel, and also serves as the title of a new book by Dan Senor and Saul Singer.

Start Up Nationaddress the trillion dollar question: How is it that Israel, a country of 7.1 million, only 60 years old, surrounded by enemies, in a constant state of war since its founding and with few natural resources, produces more high-tech start up companies than large nations at peace, such as Japan, China, Korea, Canada and the United Kingdom?

The book is an interesting read and provides some facinating answers that the authors think can be applied to the American economy. Take a look at this interview with author Dan Senor when he appeared on CNBC:
We’re proud, in our own small way, to be part of the story as the first commercial list company operating in Israel.
David


Congratulations to The Jewish Donor Blog!

A hearty congrats and a big mazal tov to the Jewish Donor blog and all its contributors for reaching the 300 post mark!

With well over 10,000 page views and 15,000 clicks, the Jewish Donor Blog has really made some big strides since ourfirst post back in January of 2008!

We would like to thank our loyal readers for giving us an audience for our blog posts and we would also like to wish you all many more years of continued reading of our blog!

Yoav Kaufman

NextMark Releases 3Q09 Data Card Quality Report


 

Negev Direct ranked

14th out of 64

list management companies with 100+ titles.

Average Data Card Score, 3rd Quarter
2009: 96.1

Being of Service

What email message do I write most often?

I receive so many emails and spend much of my time in the office writing to clients and vendors.

Much of our business involves problem solving. And I often find myself in the position of being thanked for something that I, or one of our staff, has done: getting a rush order out, tracking down an answer on an urgent clearance…whatever.

We try and go the extra mile to provide the best service possible and I’m sure lots of our competitors try to as well.

And when thanked, I usually find myself writing “Our pleasure to be of service”. (If i’m in a particularly good mood, I may attach one of my photographs to the email for the recipient to enjoy as well).

The reason I use that phrase so often is that I really mean it. Not just as a slogan. Or a company motto. I really do mean it.

My father was an attorney for some 40 years and when asked what he enjoyed most about practicing law he will always answer “the chance to help people who really needed it”. And he meant it.

They don’t build lawyers like that anymore.

I’ve tried to inculcate that spirit of service throughout Negev Direct: helping clients, vendors and sometimes even people who are trying to contact a rival company. And not just helping them, but understanding that helping them really is our pleasure and what makes our company special.
It truly is our pleasure to be of service.
David

Visit Our Friends

Our amazing web designer just added a new feature to the negevdirect.com website that I’m excited to share with our blog readers.

We now have a new button we call “Visit Our Friends” that links up to this nifty page with a list of all of Negev Direct’s networks and friends.
Now you can join Negev Direct’s networks and visit our friends all from the same page!
Thanks Jamie.
Yoav

Blogs of Interest to the Jewish Federations

Many thanks to the UJC JF for recently recommending the Jewish Donor Blog to their readers…
– The Jewish Donor Blog was recently included on the United Jewish Communities Jewish Federations of North America’s listing of “Blogs of Interest to the Jewish Federations”.
Yoav

NextMark Releases 2Q 09 Data Card Quality Report

Negev Direct’s 2Q 09 Nextmark Rankings:

Ranking for 100-249 Titles Catagory:

16

Data Card Score This Qtr:

95.3

 Data Card Score Last Qtr:

95.1

 Data Card Score Change:

+0.1%

 # of Titles on the Nextmark Sytem:
196

We’re Back!

The jewishdonorblog.com is back!

We’re happy to announce that we’ve added some brand new features that still have that great new car smell!

Here’swhat we’ve improved on…

– Check out our new social networking sharing buttons at the bottom of each post courtesy of sociofluid.com
– Our Email subscription form is now higher and more prominent, which makes for easier use and hopefully many more subscriptions.
– The “About This Blog” description is much more concise and takes up less valuable blog space… many thanks to Oren for your help with that!
Thanks for reading and enjoy!
Yoav

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