So, Uh, Are We Doing This Right?
This is similar to the previous example, but it uses a combination of the intelligent mail barcode (IMB) on the postal mail and telephones as opposed to e-mail.
- Just as noted above, you need to split the postal mail group into the test and control panels, but you will want to split only those who have telephone numbers as part of their records. This is because the presence or absence of a telephone number may indicate a different level of involvement of that donor when compared to a donor with no telephone number.
- Then you would use the IMB to track the test group so you would know within 24–48 hours of when the letter will be delivered to the prospective donor. You would then telephone the test group to encourage it to read and respond to the letter, but you would also measure: who and how many could not be reached, who and how many answered but declined further communication, who and how many pledged or donated via telephone, and who was reached and then later did or did not donate.
You would then compare the data on all of these “segments” with the control. Perhaps those who were reached but declined further communication performed significantly worse than those in the control. Does that mean a phone call damaged the relationship between the charity and that donor? Or perhaps those who were reached and spoke via telephone to a charity solicitor but didn’t donate by phone responded significantly better to the direct-mail package than those who were never called.
Testing additional channels or media in a national DRTV environment.
DRTV, when conducted nationally, is a wide-ranging medium targeted at demographic groups (who watch a particular network at that time of day). Unlike direct mail, e-mail or telemarketing, it is not targeted to individual donors. As a result, understanding whether DRTV lifted response rates to direct mail or whether direct mail lifted response rates to DRTV is difficult but not impossible.