Two Common Direct-mail Production Issues April 18, 2006 By Abny Santicola, editor, FundRaising Success Advisor There are two perennial direct-mail production issues, according to Stephen Hitchcock, vice president for client services at Berkeley, Calif.-based full-service fundraising firm Mal Warwick Associates. They are: 1) The timeliness of mailings, i.e., trying to get them out as quickly as possible; and 2) Finding what Hitchcock calls that "sweet spot" of cost effectiveness. In terms of the timeliness of mailings, Hitchcock says there's always a desire on the part of the direct-mail production staff and the printers to have a certain amount of lead time. Balancing this with
Netting High-Dollar Donors Feb. 7, 2006 By Abny Santicola, associate editor, FundRaising Success Not all direct mail is created equal. Sure, from organization to organization a lot of the inequality is due to budgets of different girth. But even within an organization, there can be a lot of variance among direct-mail campaigns. In his book, "The Mercifully Brief Real World Guide to ... Raising $1,000 Gifts by Mail," Mal Warwick, founder and chairman of Berkeley, Calif.-based fundraising and marketing agency Mal Warwick & Associates, shares his tips for raising high-dollar gifts. Among Warwick's many points are the four key musts for organizations looking
Using E-mail to Engage Jan. 10, 2006 By Abny Santicola, associate editor, FundRaising Success What's the best way for fundraisers to engage prospects in the online world? If you ask Sheeraz Haji, chief executive of GetActive, a Berkeley, Calif.-based provider of online relationship-management solutions for membership organizations, he'll tell you straight up, "It's e-mail." If you think about the Internet as a venue for direct marketing, Haji says, e-mail is really online direct mail. As such, nonprofit organizations should be considering things like the size of their databases and metrics and looking at how their lists are responding and growing. But maybe most importantly,
Most of the time, almost no one will respond to your appeals by mail. The only reason direct-mail fundraising works is that someone who does send you a first gift is very likely to send another when asked, writes Mal Warwick, author and founder of the Berkeley, Calif.-based, full-service fundraising company Mal Warwick & Associates.