Reminder: The Year-End Holiday Giving Season Is Coming
As fundraisers across the globe know, the year-end holiday giving season is typically the time of year that the bulk of donations come in. It's the double effect of the general charitable nature that accompanies the holidays along with the attractive incentive of the tax-deductible gift deadline — and of course, people's general desire to help their missions of choice.
Since the year-end holiday giving season is so vital to the fundraising sector, it's never too early to start planning your end-of-year campaigns. After all, September is less than a week away, and before you know it, all the trick-or-treaters will be staving off cavities and bellyaches, filling their heads with visions of turkey, cranberry sauce and, yes, the December holidays.
So with that in mind, take a look at last year's Fundraising Success Gold Awards Multichannel Campaign of the Year winner, the MSPCA's Holiday Tree Campaign. And remember to get your entries in for the 2012 FundRaising Success Gold Awards for Fundraising Excellence. Entry fees are $125 for the first entry and $75 for each subsequent entry. Get your entry form and tracking sheet here, and send your submissions in today. The deadline for entries to be in our office is Friday, Sept. 7, with the winners announced in our October issue.
Holiday Tree Campaign
Submitted by DaVinci Direct
✔ The Numbers
Recipients: 76,097 direct mail; 86,917 e-mail
Response rate: 4.2 percent for DM; 12.8 percent open rate for e-mail, 1.14 percent clickthrough rate
Total cost: $43,388
Income generated: $122,215
Average gift: $38.28
While backing up a direct-mail package with an e-mail is technically "multichannel," the best, most aggressive multichannel campaigns use more than two channels. Such was certainly the case with this effort by DaVinci Direct on behalf of MSPCA. In addition to the direct-mail and e-mail components, it also included strategically placed posters, an expandable banner ad on the Boston.com homepage and smaller banner ads on Boston.com's pets page.
But the grabber component was the opportunity for proud pet owners to have their furry friends' photos placed on ornaments to be hung on trees in the Prudential Center and at Nevins Farm Center in Methuen, Mass. The only way to qualify was to donate on MSPCA's website and upload a photo.
Our judges were impressed with the consistency of messaging across all of the channels.
"Our main objective was to drive more donors to the Web … so that MSPCA was able to track all donor information quickly and efficiently," DaVinci's Kate Lysakowski said. "Our secondary objective this year was to maintain consistency in both design and messaging across all promotional channels: a direct-mail piece, poster, e-mail and website promotions. The prior year had a slight disconnect in carrying the look of the direct mail and poster piece over to the Web."
Gold Awards judge Joe Boland says, "This package really strikes the proper tone with animal lovers. People love to show off their pets, and the involvement device of a chance to feature your pet on an ornament really resonates well. Outstanding results with consistent integration."
— Margaret Battistelli Gardner, editor-in-chief of FundRaising Success