Make Members’ Needs the Urgent Appeal
Isn’t it funny how one word often can instill an emotion — be it fear, empathy, concern, anger, etc. — in the heart and mind of the person who sees or hears it?
The outer envelope of this mailing sent by NARAL Pro-Choice America has a red horizontal bar above the address box that reads: “URGENT MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL.” The word “urgent” makes the mailing suddenly a hot potato that needs to be opened and read instantly.
For those recipients who have seen this urgency tactic before -- and it is used often in nonprofit advocacy mailings -- NARAL turns up the heat with an affixed sticker that reads, “WARNING: Federal election law prohibits NARAL Pro-Choice America from sending inside political communications to inactive members.” Translation: If you want to stay in the loop, respond to this mailing and renew your membership. The recipient might not understand the implications of this statement or what exactly constitutes an “inside” political communication, but that’s irrelevant. The outer envelope communicates a call to action that isn’t about the organization’s need for support but rather the recipient’s need for the line of communication the organization provides.
Making the main message about the benefits that will be lost if recipients don’t renew makes the mailing more member/donor centered and the organization’s mission all the more imperative.
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