And the Winners Are …
Providing a bank for recipients to save to help Toys for Tots in December and encouraging them to start doing so with the very pennies attached is something of a stroke of genius in that it gets around the issues that come with using actual coinage in solicitation packages: Do donors perceive it as a waste of money, and is it, indeed, a waste of money? This way, the pennies ostensibly go into the bank and the recipient will use those pennies and lots of other change she has saved in the bank to help Toys for Tots fulfill its mission to provide Christmas toys for children who might not otherwise have them.
Aside from the letter, the cleverly designed bank and a return envelope, this mailing's only other element is the reply device where the three pennies are attached. And that's where the purer ask is made. So in one package, the recipient has the option of helping in one or both ways: Donate money now, save money and buy a toy later, or — best of all — do both.
"This renewal effort sells the offer with lots of sizzle, making the pennies meaningful in multiple ways, making links between the donor and a child who receives a toy, and reinforcing the organization's outstanding stewardship of donations," Gold Awards judge Kimberly Seville says. "The offer is beautifully backstopped with an emotionally satisfying story. The package does a spot-on job of speaking to the donor's heart in familiar language about what matters to this organization's donors.
"Images of pennies and the actual coins showing through the outer envelope window are likely more effective than Christmas imagery for this summer campaign," she adds.
Nothing proves that point better than the results: According to Sewell, the package tested against a long-standing control package, the Calendar Booklet.