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7 Direct Mail Strategies for Charities and Nonprofit Organizations

7 direct mail strategies for charities and nonprofit organizations

Your charity or nonprofit organization should be using direct mail to help fundraise your objectives and raise awareness about your organization and cause. After all, direct mail campaigns are perfectly suited for the unique requirements and goals of nonprofits!

In this article, we will discuss seven helpful tips for running a successful fundraising campaign with direct mail.

Why is direct mail marketing ideal for charities and nonprofit organizations?

Every type of organization should include direct mail campaigns in their overall marketing efforts. However, direct mail is particularly well-suited for charities and nonprofits. Here’s why:

  • It’s personal: People tend to ignore advertising that seems impersonal or irrelevant. Fortunately, direct mail is a highly personal type of marketing. First, recipients can actually hold your message in their hands. This also makes it much harder to ignore. Additionally, you can personalize your message so it addresses them directly, making it even more effective.
  • It’s targeted: Direct mail marketing can be narrowly and directly targeted. This enables charities to segment their market based on specific demographics, like location, income, age, family size, and giving habits. Messages can then be tailored to prospective donors, resulting in a more robust emotional connection.
  • It has a great ROI: Charities and nonprofits often operate on limited budgets, so it’s crucial that every dollar is used to its maximum potential. Direct mail campaigns offer a fantastic return on investment, thus helping charities do more with less.

How can a direct mail campaign help your nonprofit or charity organization?

Direct mail campaigns are immensely beneficial for charities and nonprofits. They can play a pivotal role in raising the money you need to continue doing good work in the world. Let’s take a closer look at how direct mail can help your organization:

  • Connect with potential donors: A highly targeted direct mail fundraising campaign helps you reach the right donors. These donors will want to help your organization on a continuous basis, rather than just for a one-time donation.
  • Personalization and customization: Direct mail pieces are tangible, which makes them more personal (and interesting) than digital ads. They’re also easily customizable with modern printing technology. You can include personalized text to connect with prospective donors and retain their long-term commitment.
  • Increase engagement: With direct mail, you can unlock increased long-term engagement from your donors. Direct mail campaigns foster personal connection by acknowledging your donors’ generosity and making them feel appreciated. When people feel appreciated, they’re more likely to continue donating.
  • Keeping in touch: Sending personalized direct mail to your donors helps you build and maintain meaningful relationships. These campaigns remind donors about your organization, so they continue to donate in the future. Plus, it helps keep your database up to date

7 Tips for Direct Mail Marketing for Charities and Nonprofit Organizations

1. Address the recipient directly

Direct mail is more effective when it’s personal, and there is nothing more personal than addressing the recipient by name! Personalization allows you to make a greater impact on donors, grabbing their attention immediately and fostering an emotional connection.

Troi Mailing Services uses Variable Image Printing to easily and cost-effectively customize direct mail pieces with personal information and images.

2. Tell your story

Don’t underestimate the power of storytelling. Your nonprofit organization’s unique story can help create an emotional response among recipients, which is crucial for the success of your fundraising efforts. It also makes your charity look more credible and trustworthy.

In your direct mailer, tell prospective donors about your organization’s struggles, triumphs, and reasons for existing. Why were you motivated to start the charity in the first place? What problem are you trying to solve? And what is the scope of your organization?

It’s most effective to tell your story from a first-person perspective. This establishes an emotional connection and makes your appeal more personal.

3. Use urgency

People respond best to urgency. If they feel like something can wait, they usually do. Therefore, your message (and goals) should feel urgent and important. There’s no time to waste!

Ensure your copy feels pressing and communicates how their contributions will make an immediate difference to your cause. The sooner they donate, the better. Urgency helps your prospective donor make a quick (and positive) decision.

4. Include important keywords

There are certain keywords that every nonprofit and charity should incorporate into their direct mail messaging. These words and phrases grab the reader’s attention, establish credibility, and signal the potential benefits for future donors. For example:

  • “Tax-deductible.” Supporting your charitable organization helps make the world a better place; however, it also has additional benefits for donors. A tax-deduction is an attractive bonus!
  • “You.” Your messaging should focus on the recipient. It may seem counterintuitive, but fundraising campaigns tend to be more effective when they’re more about the donor and cause—and less about the organization. You should make your donors feel important. Using “you” makes them feel more connected to their donation.
  • “Give.” It’s better to use “give” rather than “support.” Support is vague. Someone can “support” your cause, yet neglect to donate. “Give,” on the other hand, is direct. It clarifies your purpose and tells recipients what you need them to do.

5. Be clear about donations

As we just mentioned, it’s vital to be clear about the reason behind your direct mail campaign; for example, you’re seeking donations. It’s essential that you are clear and specific about this purpose. Don’t be shy! If you don’t clarify your need for donations, then you may never receive any.

Be specific about how much you aim to collect for your fundraising campaign, how the funds will help, and the desired donation range. This clarity also makes your campaign appear more legitimate, which leads to faster responses.

6. Segment your audience

Segmenting your audience allows you to run highly targeted fundraising campaigns. Organize donors by specific parameters, such as industry, age, profession, income, and location. Consider their preferences and past actions (have they donated before?). Then, you can tailor your messaging so it best resonates with that particular group.

For example, current donors likely need less background information about your organization. Therefore, you can reach out to them with an appeal for a specific fundraising campaign. Conversely, prospective donors should receive more informative materials to introduce them to your nonprofit.

7. Track your results

Tracking lets you know how your campaign performed. Consequently, it’s essential to track and analyze your results. You’ll learn what worked, what didn’t, and what changes you should make for future campaigns. Troi Mailing Services can assist you.

Mail Advertising for Nonprofits and Charities

Troi Mailing Services is ready to help your nonprofit or charity run a successful fundraising campaign. Our mail advertising experts have the knowledge and experience to service your direct mail needs from start to finish.

To learn more about direct mail advertising, call Troi Mailing Services at 1-866-486-0423 or contact us online.

About: Seamus Barton
Seamus Barton - Author
Seamus Barton joined Troi Mailing Services in 2014 after graduating from York University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Professional Writing. As a manager of print and direct mail solutions, he sees how words play an important role in personalizing any experience. Seamus’ passion for writing motivates him to provide frequent direct marketing content that supports each Client’s individual needs. Please chat with Seamus about commercial printing and direct mailing campaigns, or about how to marry digital and physical strategies for optimal Smartmail Marketing success.

You can connect with Seamus on LinkedIn or by calling Troi Mailing Services at 1-866-486-0423 or via email at Read his latest article featured in Direct Marketing Magazine on “Dimensional Mail: Marketing’s Buffet Lobster

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