Temptation No. 1
Starting the project by writing the letter.
Here’s what’s happening: You’ve been assigned to create an acquisition package. You’re up for it because you have a great idea. You feel really good about that idea. You are sure it’s a winner. So you sit down and start writing the letter, right? Wrong. The letter is the very last thing you should create.
Temptation No. 2
Creating the package and then finding out how much it will cost.
Start with financial research. What is the cost of the current control? What is your cost per new donor? If you have a great idea but find out that it’s going to almost double the cost of the previous prospect package, you have a big problem. You’ll have to get twice as many donors!
But if you think your new idea is just a whole lot better than the old package, then go ahead and take a calculated risk. In fact, load up the package. Then, if the results are good but the package cost is too high, do a test where you skinny the package down.
You see, what you want is a package that will bring in the highest number of donors at the lowest per-donor cost, with the highest average gift.
Dream on. Somewhere in the above equation, you’ll have to make a decision and then go with it. But don’t go with it blindly.
Temptation No. 3
Creating a package without first examining what you’re
If your new idea is very similar to the old idea, then the only increase will be incremental, and it won’t result in a breakthrough. Sometimes incremental is good — and sometimes that’s all you can really expect.
But, of course, you hope for a breakthrough, so that means doing something that is very much different from the current control.