News & Press

In Light of the Current Situation…

Dear Partners and Friends,

As the uncertainty of the global pandemic reaches us in our daily lives we would like to share information that we have gathered internally and from a wide variety of industry leaders who have been meeting on an ongoing basis as this crisis unfolds.  These points apply to our piece of the direct response arena, nonprofit fundraising, with a particular attention to donor acquisition programs.

  • Per our “meetings” little to no groups are cutting acquisition at this point, although many are limiting testing new packages.   Depending on the market, the spring and summer are not typically large package testing months for most mailers.

  • The USPS has reported no issues in slowdown and mail is moving on schedule. 

  • Many organizations are still continuing to proceed with acquisition mailings in place but of course there are a few exceptions.  At least one new organization who has never mailed acquisition mail has decided to move their launch until the fall.  This is a better mail period any way so this is sound advice.

  • Face-to-face channels are shut down and expenses are being shifted to other channels (mail, digital and phone).  This is a good time to look at these budget and see if you can move these funds to channels that are open and working.

  • Events are cancelled or are being rescheduled for later dates.  Major gift officer travel is suspended. MGOs are calling or emailing their donors as cultivations to check-in.  There is much encouragement to try to reach these donors via phone or online.

  • Many museums, arts, education and faith-based groups who have suspended their programs are retooling their messages. 

  • A survey of printers and mailshops show no problems. All are continuing to run full operations, all report ample supplies of paper, ink, etc.

  • During recessions and difficult times, direct mail donors have historically been the strongest donors. There was a discussion about not hesitating in the mail now, because we can’t predict what will happen in a few months.

  • Historically, mailers who have pulled out or slowed down during a crisis have taken years to recover, if they were ever able to recover.  It is not a solution to a complex problem. 

  • Early email campaigns this week have been surprisingly strong (for both virus-related and non-related messages). They were higher than expected. One fundraiser thought people were paying attention at home as if it was year-end giving!

We would be more than happy to discuss your program in greater detail, the more we know about what you are facing the better we are able to fine tune your individual programs.


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