Case Study: Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Boldt: You mention the current economy. How important was this?
Tiffany: Janice and I talked about this. It creates a sense of solidarity, lets the donor know the organization is engaged and aware — and perhaps experiencing some of the same economic challenges they are.
I think it also shows respect to the people who support your organization's mission. It acknowledges that there are many worthy organizations the donor could choose to support, and we're grateful they choose to support Children's Hospital.
Boldt: The copy is just over a page? Why was this length chosen versus two pages, or four pages?
Tiffany: With a matching gift, there needs to be a sense of urgency. The shorter copy — that's still long enough to include the rich details of the story and build the case for giving - achieves that.
Boldt: What was the audience/list?
Flammia: Primarily donors that had made gifts to the annual fund by mail in the past three years, via email event donors and subscribers to the enewsletter, and website visitors.
Boldt: What other response data can you report?
Flammia: 7,500 pieces were mailed, two times, in September and October. The second mailing was a reminder and did not include the matching checks. Email appeal went to 6,700 and an enewsletter with blurb on the campaign and link to a special landing page at the website went to 15,000.
Total DM response rate was 6.2 percent; the average gift amount was $52. Online contributions made through a dedicated "Double Your Gift" donation form during the campaign (8/21-11/4), were 8.5% more than all online donations during the previous eight months.
Total direct mail income was $45,875 over two drops. Combined total of online and direct mail was $62,117. Percentage online revenue was 26 percent.
Boldt: In conclusion, what worked best in this package? What didn't? What is its future?
Flammia: The story, images, website presence and deadline to give worked best. The cost was too high. We took a risk spending a bit more on the package, especially not knowing how the economy would play out in 2009. Plans were developed in the first half of the year.