Special Report: Fundraising 101 Direct Mail
The key to future success will be to integrate the donor data you receive through the direct-mail program with all of your other sources, such as Internet donations, special events, volunteer programs, text messaging, etc., to create a multichannel donor-communication strategy.
3 Things You Absolutely Must Know About Paper This Year
By Crystal Uppercue
When planning your direct-mail campaigns for 2009, you’ll want to weigh your paper options carefully. The paper you choose to convey your message can speak volumes about your organization.
You also must consider paper costs versus aesthetic look and feel. Which is more important in a year that might force you to make budget cuts?
Finally, by evaluating green paper options, fundraisers should take a cue from consumers who are practicing being greener and leaner.
1. Manage costs
Industry expert Verle Sutton expects a decline in 2009 paper prices. Sutton, who is president of R.O.S. Paper Sales and founder, editor and publisher of Forestweb’s monthly newsletter, The Reel Time Report, says that the 2007–2008 price surge substantially reduced demand, and spot prices already have begun to decline, according to a special report posted on BtoB Media Business on Nov. 6.
That’s good news for direct mailers, but campaigns managers still need to watch costs.
- Try substituting the new brighter, whiter, uncoated offset stocks for opaque paper. They offer the same brightness as the “old” shades of opaque but are less expensive.
- To utilize as much of the paper as possible, ask your printer about “gang-running” several of your printed pieces together on one sheet. For example, if you’re printing a reply card, can you fit a postcard on the sheet to use with another mailing? Such preplanned combos are a great use of leftover space on a press sheet.
- Find out if your printer offers house stocks that incorporate special pricing from paper suppliers. And do consider these when comparing house and premium papers and prices for your upcoming print campaign.
- Investigate a print-on-demand application (sometimes called “just in time” printing). This system allows marketers to upload print collateral templates to a site and order pieces “as needed” instead of ordering in bulk. Companies that use this application for “just in time delivery” save paper, warehouse and distribution costs.
- Talk to your print vendor about how to achieve a “textured” paper look through printing. For example, if you like a stock that has a leather or grainy look, you can always achieve a similar look by adding an artistic design to the background of your printed piece.
2. Match medium to message
NewPage, a leading producer of coated paper in North America, continued its Response Project research at the 2008 DMA convention in Las Vegas. NewPage confirmed that, yes, even with this sophisticated audience, paper influences purchase choice. Sixty-seven percent of respondents were influenced by the heaviest paper stocks, despite other basic components like graphics, colors, photos and text remaining the same.