These multiple touchpoints are very important given the multichannel nature of today’s donors. By digitally co-targeting their direct mail recipients, fundraisers ensure that they are reaching their prospects and donors wherever they are. Coordinating messaging across channels can help ensure that fundraising appeals stand out in today’s barrage of marketing impressions, and studies also show that multichannel fundraising tangibly improves response. Donors who receive multiple messages are up to three times more likely than mail-only donors to respond and give larger gifts₁. This means that there are significant opportunities for fundraisers to increase revenue by adding a digital touch to their direct mail campaigns. This is true for both prospecting campaigns and donor file renewal and cultivation appeals, in which co-targeting can help maximize response rates and gift amounts from loyal supporters.
The Results of Using Digital/Direct Mail Co-Targeting
Co-targeting has proven to be a successful strategy for many different types and sizes of nonprofits looking to maximize their mailing ROI, especially during times when the costs of those direct mail efforts are increasing. Take a look at the below table, which highlights the results that Wiland clients in multiple nonprofit categories have experienced when using digital/direct mail co-targeting.
These prospecting campaigns were run in 2021 with direct mail audiences of 125,000 to 400,000 people. The table shows the differences between running mail-only campaigns and adding digital display advertising to supplement those mailings. By adding these digital touches, these organizations saw their conversion rates increase between 40% to 70+%, representing a significant amount of revenue for relatively little additional marketing cost.
When these campaigns were run in 2021, fundraisers were experiencing both similar and unique challenges compared to today. The industry today has further matured past early pandemic uncertainties, and we have a better understanding of pandemic-related donor behaviors than we did in 2021. However, economic uncertainty has continued. Even amidst this, co-targeting empowered these organizations to drive better overall response—maximizing their campaigns with a cost-effective and powerful boost.
Multichannel fundraising is a critical part of a nonprofit’s strategy throughout the year, and it is especially important as we begin 2023. Digital/direct mail co-targeting is an effective method and easy entry point for fundraisers looking to explore further digital opportunities—a strategy in which adding pennies in digital spending significantly boosts the performance of direct mail investments.
₁ “Multi-Channel Donors Give 3x More, Yet Report Reveals Just 3% of Nonprofits Leverage Multi-Channel Communications.” 2021, Business Wire.