Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Mail for Millenials

I know.  You don't mail your younger donors.  There are too many, they don't give, we don't have good addresses, they don't read mail.  I hear this all the time, internally and externally.  At every gathering of marketing, fundraising and communications professionals that I have been do over the last 4 or 5 years.

Mail them.

Why you ask?  Because nobody else is.  They don't get junk mail, they don't get bills, they don't get checks in the mail.  They file taxes online and pay many of their bills digitally.  Some have never held a checkbook.  Your appeal will be one of the only things in the mail to many of them.

Be smart about it, don't send them the same appeal that you are sending your direct mail responsive 68 year old alum.  The appeals can't look, feel sound or be written for the AARP.  Go to your designer who does the enrollment materials and explain to them what you are doing.  Use what they design.  If they do it right, it will look all wrong.  Don't be afraid of words but  the messaging needs to be direct, clear, succinct and demonstrate accountability.  Tell them and show them.

Integrate with web.  Do not email it.  Recruit volunteers from their peers and ask them to post it on social media.  Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube each reach 25% or more of the population but that is really, really, really crowded space on a mobile device for eyeballs.  That mailbox looks better and better the more you learn about how many folks are trying to get a piece of their pixel life.  By using the mail to drive and support that intial inquiry you are able to create focused direction that they will verify on the web but you have them headed in your direction when they get there, not competing with the world for attention.

Remember the line about the cat and curiosity?  In this case, curiosity about what is in the envelope gets the attention and the cat makes a gift.  Better outcome for you and the cat, right?


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