Look! A letter from (yawn)…
Consistency — always being yourself in your donor communications.
Creativity — always being interesting in your donor communications.
Impossible to be both? No. But it’s a constant challenge.
Keep your logo intact. But vary your graphics.
Don’t let “branding” dictate too much of your look. Devotion to “brand” can decrease your donation revenues.
Some ministries, striving for consistency, mail virtually identical dull packages mailing after mailing.
“It gives us a strong, corporate feel.”
“We cut costs by buying envelopes in bulk.”
“We don’t have the personnel to create a unique look every time.”
“We don’t want to look like tacky fundraisers.”
Unfortunately, identical corporate-looking mail packages often have the unpleasant side-effect of lower response rates because more people tend to respond more warmly to a personal appeal than to a corporate one.
Repetition in and of itself isn’t necessarily wrong; but the repetition of a boring presentation tends to decrease response.
- What you may save in discounted bulk envelope printing, you more than lose in flattened response to the appeals they carry.
- What you may save in salaries or fees for creative packaging personnel, you more than lose in flattened response to the vanilla packages you send without them!
Creative package design doesn’t automatically equate to a “tacky fundraiser” look; there are plenty of dignified, classy, yet interesting approaches to direct mail design that can maintain your integrity while still engaging the recipient’s interest.
Neither an off-the-wall, never-know-what-to-expect approach nor a dull, plain, monotonous approach will generate maximum relationship with, or response from, your donors.
Jesus’ earthly ministry was fully integrated. He expressed Himself through a dazzling array of techniques and revealed a wide variety of emotions — but we can look over the whole of His life and teachings and see His single over-arching mission of reconciling people to God.
Jesus did not get sidetracked on Satan’s political campaigns during that wilderness temptation.
He did not go “off message” even when the Pharisees tried their best to lure Him away.
Jesus maintained a certain consistency. So should we.