The reason Merkle RMG is critical is because we are the eyes and ears for a nonprofit. Think about it — we are the first to engage with a donor. Whether it is processing a donation, flagging a piece of comment mail, responding to an email, or answering a phone call — we are first to react to a donor’s behavior.
Finally, organizations are using technology to complement and strengthen their fundraising program. But is this really the case? I’m not sure. In one conversation, I heard about how excited an organization was that it could marry its online and offline sustainer programs.
Whether or not you have money to burn, no one likes to waste money. And anyway, the government frowns upon burning their paper. So why are so many nonprofits squandering their resources on mailings to bad addresses?
This month’s blog focuses on a survey commissioned by Merkle Response Management Group on nonprofit direct mail donation processing. Market Connections, Inc. conducted the blind online survey, asking non-profits what methods they use to manage their direct mail responses, how well they think they are addressing key areas, the importance of specific attributes when evaluating current or potential outsource service companies, and perceptions of the benefits of outsourcing. 157 non-profit organizations responded, and all use direct mail as a fundraising tool.
I’ve been involved in fundraising for over 17 years, working initially in data entry and other front and back-end services. Early on in my career I wrote standard operating procedures for donation processing at the American Red Cross. From my perspective, security in donation processing is hugely important.
With the current prevalence of digital media, I’m often asked if traditional direct mail is still relevant for nonprofit fundraisers. And despite the constantly changing digital landscape, the answer is yes — it’s definitely relevant. When I was in college, beepers were all the rage and cell phones weren’t even in existence. In the past decade, we’ve seen phones evolve from “just a phone” to complex mini computers. Who knows what the next communications development will be?