Focus On: Lists: I Don't Want to Hear It!
Or maybe they opened the envelope but felt the “ask ladder” was too aggressive. Still others might have been put off by graphic photos. Who knows for sure? The reasons are as diverse as the personalities of your target audience members.
Here’s where you use your CNRs for tests. Change the envelope, change the ask ladder or leave out the photos; try different packages and sizes. Run the names a couple more times and see what happens. At least you’re getting the most out of the names you bought.
Does this service benefit all nonprofit mailers? Absolutely not! If you’re mailing 20,000 pieces twice a year, then this service is not for you. It’s unlikely that you’ll see a CNR pattern if you’ve reached potential donors only two times in the past year. But if you’re mailing at least 500,000 pieces monthly or quarterly, this service could save you thousands of dollars on each mailing.
If your annual direct mail campaign is budgeted for a certain volume of names, moving prospects to a CNR status will diminish the size of your list. Even though you mail millions of pieces a year, there might be reasons a CNR program would not be beneficial to you.
“One apparent problem is how to replace the dropped CNR names,” says Susan Anstrand, CEO of California direct mail firm Names in the News. “Although testing and regression analysis indicate that often the revenue on the deep CNRs does not warrant mailing, where do you go to replace those names? Many of our larger clients have a limited mailing universe, compared to their cold-mail volume.
“As a result, their core lists get mailed many times during the course of a year, and CNRs are thus a natural by-product,” she adds.
Viewpoints vary as to whether to hold on to those non-responders or rent more lists and replace them.