A New Idea in Freemiums
Front-end premiums, or "freemiums," have long been commonplace in direct mail fund raising. Calendars, greeting cards and bumper stickersto name a fewhave widely been used by nonprofit mailers to show appreciation for contributions in advance. Many believe the need for freemiums is due to lack of nonprofit pulling power in straightforward appeals; fund-raisers are forced to turn to the freemium, which can give a package added value.
Name-and-address labels, for example, have been one of the most effective and well-received freemiums in the nonprofit sector. But much like any great concept in direct mail, many mailers adopted it for their own packages, and now some would say the name-and-address label freemium has lost its panache.
Habitat for Humanity, a proponent of testing different format sizes and appeal strategies, apparently needed an upfront hook that went beyond the ordinary offering. In a 6" x 9" envelope package dropped in June, the Americus, GA-based Christian housing ministry includes a freemium that does just that.
Amid the letter, donor form and BRE are five fold-a-notesas Habitat for Humanity creatively refers to them. The 51/2" x 81/2" notes fold into 4" x 51/2" novelty greeting cards: once along a perforated edge, then a second time by folding back a one-inch flap. Tiny butterfly decals are included to seal the cards closed. The colorful summer scene depicted on the fold-a-notes matches the butterfly theme on the outer envelope.
"The Fold-A-Notes are yours to keep, with no obligation, as a reminder of the wonderful changes that are being made in the lives of little boys and girls in need of safe, decent, healthy places to live," reads the postscript of the two-page letter.
But even prior to that, Habitat for Humanity makes sure to tease its freemium on the front and back of the outer envelope. "You'll Love The Handy Fold-A-Notes Enclosed," teaser copy reads.
In the past, Habitat for Humanity has offered calendars, stickers and greeting cards, among others. This marks the first time the Archive has received this Habitat mailing with a creative spin on the greeting card freemium.