The Obama Effect, Part II: 20 Takeaways for Multichannel Fundraisers
17. Make Segmentation and Personalization Pay
"The cost of segmentation and the means of production are less expensive online than they are in the mail. In the mail, you can't afford to have 4,000 different versions of the package for 4,000 different kinds of donors, whereas online there's just so much more flexibility and potential," Taggart points out. The personalization available online allows fundraisers to capture more constituents on niche hot-button issues and appeals.
"If there's somebody out there on a social network and they're talking about the China fur trade and they have a group of 30 friends, then we can talk to them and give them the tools to do fundraising on our behalf on that issue ... whereas before we'd have to lump those 30 people into this mass mail acquisition about factory farming, and that just wasn't where their hook was," Taggart explains.
18. Use Mobile Wisely
Marketers are talking about mobile across all sectors, even fundraising, but only a few organizations have successfully employed this channel. Bhagat points out the obstacle of consumers' sensitivity to mobile messaging volume, because oftentimes they pay for each message received. But, he says, mobile does have some intelligent applications, which the Obama campaign made clear. "When they said if you're an Obama mobile subscriber you'll be the first to hear the VP announcement ... they did a lot of things like that to really leverage the fact that we are today living in a multichannel world," Bhagat says.
The mobile channel still has relatively little marketing clutter and can feel very personal when done right. "Whenever the direct marketers talked about the Obama campaign, we all joked, ‘When he texted me the other day ...' He didn't text me! But it really felt like that," Taggart laughs.