Turn Doubters Into Believers
The inclusion of this simple insert dramatically boosted results. This positive outcome led to other tests: A quote from the magazine was included in the letter, and a teaser that announced the favorable rating was placed on the envelope. Each test further increased response.
And this isn’t an isolated case. Many examples of similar tests with other organizations also have proved to be successful. Organizations that have received favorable comments by publications or efficiency ratings from nonprofit watchdog groups have used these flattering reviews to their benefit. Simple charts that illustrate the fiscal efficiency of an organization have proven successful, as well.
Ironically, the success of these tests also proves my original point that there’s a level of major skepticism on the part of at least some donors. Otherwise, why else would there be such a favorable response to efforts to tout efficiency? This must mean that they suspect many nonprofit organizations are not efficient.
To figure out how to reassure your donors and potential supporters about your organization’s efficiency, ask yourself the following questions: Does my organization spend a majority of its funds on its mission versus administration and fundraising? Have watchdog groups given my organization good ratings? Have any magazines, newspapers or other publications given us good reviews?
If you have a positive response to any of these questions, then you need to convey this information to your donor audience. You’ll be rewarded for the effort.
Jim Hussey is president of Adams Hussey & Associates. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.