#Bridge15 Take-aways

July 13, 2015 - by Amy Sukol

With over half our staffers attending the 2015 DMAW and AFP Bridge to Integrated Marketing Conference this past week, Lautman Maska Neill & Company came away with an assortment of fresh insights to carry us into fall fundraising. Here are just a few “share-worthy” take-aways:

  • When messaging to mid-level donors, frame your mission in grand terms. Lower-dollar donors respond to a short-term need, while higher-dollar donors respond to a longer-term vision.

  • Why should we tell stories? Research shows that listeners will remember 60 to 75% of the information shared through a story … but only 5 to 10% of listeners will remember information conveyed by facts and figures.

  • Looking at initial test results is not enough. While you may get winning results upfront, it’s important to track the impact of the strategy change on long-term value.

  • Feed the Pipeline! Acquire mid-level donors through acquisition programs by taking advantage of $100 selects on lists and by using optimization techniques in data modeling to find donors with a higher propensity for a $100+ gift.

  • Set the Stage! Work to upgrade donors by having a clearly branded mid-level giving society that they are introduced to in a strategic way: acknowledgements followed by repeated invites to upgrade.

  • Look for the donors who are taking the time to update their address with you, who are calling with questions or complaints or who are upgrading their giving without having been asked – these are the people who care most about your organization and mission. Take the time to speak with them, engage them, and include them in special campaigns for upgrades and planned giving opportunities.

  • All channels are impacting each other. Even if we want to use source codes to track everything cleanly, it isn't going to catch everything. Always use matchbacks to determine if certain forms of communication may be increasing overall response rate. For example, see how many people who got a DM piece went online and gave and include website gifts when you are doing matchbacks.

  • Direct mail is not dead. It's different. It used to be about volume and now it's about value.

  • People read search results – even the ones that are paid ads – if they look like they were produced organically by the search engine. Wordsmithing search results and using Google grants correctly is imperative.

Congratulations on an outstanding conference – can’t wait for #Bridge2016!


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