To understand the value of your fraternity, you have to understand the value of your alumni. They truly are your most valuable asset — not the house, what most now think it is. Despite years of bad press, some deserved and some exaggerated, most fraternities were established on noble principles that produced (and still produce) great leaders and men of principle and true gentlemen. But your fraternity could be shut down by your host school or National or the local town. Therefore, (1) we must admit we have a problem and (2) we must be willing to change!
Building lifelong loyalty within alumni groups is nothing new for Affinity Connection.
When it comes down to it, fundraising is simple, and a complicated, difficult-to-understand process only confuses both your board and your volunteers. All it takes is your organization using the proper data and story-telling — through marketing, content, social media and media relations — to reach the hearts of your target audience. This non-fail process creates results!
According to Giving USA, over 80% of all fundraising dollars are still received in response to direct mail. It has a unique ability to get your message into the hands of your prospects, whether asking for a contribution or “friend-raising.” By those terms, you’d probably agree that direct mail marketing isn’t dead, and is still as powerful as it has ever been.
Direct Mail Simply Works
Many recipients are more receptive to direct mail than email or social media. According to a recent Direct Marketing Association Survey, people will spend more time reading a letter or even a post card than they will an email. The key is in the design and the message. Putting a well-designed post card or envelope into the recipient’s hands can be a powerful tool. Make your piece stand out from the rest, and chances are good that your audience will read your message.
Costs are higher with direct mail than with email, so it is vital that you are targeting the correct audience with the correct message in an attractive and well-designed package.
Balancing Your Communications Program
That said, in the age of electronic media, direct mail is no longer the complete and exclusive answer to effective communications. Email can be a great adjunct to direct mail, as it is relatively inexpensive, easy to produce and thus can be used more frequently to cover timely topics and call readers to action.
Email-driven web giving is a growing segment of philanthropy, so it should be a part of any balanced non-profit communication program, though direct mail will work better for some of your prospects and current customers. It is important to decide which mix of methods will work the best for your organization. The reality of the situation is that direct mail and email marketing are a perfect match for each other. Each method makes up for the shortcomings of the other. Used together they create a powerful tool for your marketing plan.