3 Fundraising Direct-Mail Trends
According to the recent Annual Report on Philanthropy for the Year 2011 by Giving USA, individual donations increased by 4 percent in 2011 (as compared to 2010) to $217.79 billion in contributions. Specifically, giving to education went up by 4 percent, human services by 2.5 percent, health organizations by 2.7 percent and pubic-society benefit organizations by 4 percent. The only category that decreased in donations was religious charities.
In other words, after some leaner years in 2009 and 2010 following the 2008 recession, things — such as donor dollars! — are looking up for fundraisers. However, many nonprofits continue to face budget constraints along with hesitant donor prospects, and the transition from a direct-mail-centric organization to a truly multichannel engine has been rough for many … or has yet to truly occur.
We at DirectMarketingIQ, along with our partner Fundraising Success, are here to help. In 2011, we released "The Art & Science of Multichannel Fundraising," the ultimate guide to cross-media fundraising. Each chapter was penned by proven fundraising marketers, and it covered channel selection, creative, direct mail, e-mail, mobile, social media, renewals, testing and even eight comprehensive multichannel case studies.
The "Cross-Channel Fundraising Tips and Trends" report is step two in this high-level study of fundraising marketing, as we pulled endless amounts of data from our direct-mail and e-mail archives (the most complete direct marketing archive in the world) and are presenting the current fundraising trends, including comparisons of 2011 to 2010, as well as giving a glimpse of how 2012 is shaping up. (Fundraising best practices and case studies are also included.)
Here are some of the direct-mail trends (we spotlighted e-mail as well) covered in the report:
Examining monthly fundraising mail volume over the past two years reveals a slightly different picture than looking at each year as a whole. While the first quarter of each year was roughly the same volume of mail, the rest of the quarters were markedly different.