There is inaccurate information being disseminated regarding when a direct mail piece should have 1st class postage (now 45 cents) affixed to it. The answer for those who mail at standard rates — over 500 pieces — is almost never.
If you are being advised by someone you work with, be it a printer, designer or whomever that you’d be better off “Mailing it 1st class,” your immediate response should be “Why?” You see, it’s much simpler for some printers and designers (who broker out the work) to get you to agree to pay 1st class postage rates and here is why: they don’t need to follow any postal rules and no paperwork is required to be presented at the post office.
Consider: to mail your annual appeal of 10,000 pieces at .45 = $4,500 in postage (with an average delivery time of 3-5 days), compared to 10,000 pieces mailed out at .18 cents (approximate) = $1,800 (with an average delivery time of 4-6 days).
Make sense? Before you waste any more of your constituents’ money, STOP! Ask why and listen for the silence when your direct marketing “partner” doesn’t know what to say.
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One of the most basic, beginning steps for any business who is interested in starting a social media marketing campaign is to determine who your targeted market is going to be. Once you identify who they are, you can begin to build your campaign around that group.
Trying to appeal to too many people or the wrong people is a waste of your time and resources. This in turn will save you money, because essentially as we all know, time equals money and no one likes to waste either.
Specifying the audience you want to reach makes everything easier on yourself as well. It makes the content you are posting on your social media sites more specific and more focused. Instead of users sifting through information to find specialized topics, they know everything you post will be of value because you are targeting their specific interests. If your audience is engaged, it will create conversation, which attracts more people to your page making the use of your social media sites successful.
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This is the time of year to put a coat of “new paint” on your thank you letters. Have you tried any of these?
>send a greeting card instead of a business letter…make it friendly and personal;
>include photos of success stories related to the support;
>be transparent about the way the gift is being utilized (like a specific program);
>add an invite that does not ask for more $;
>toss out the old “On behalf of…”invite the donor to something special and tweet about it or chat it up on Facebook;
>share a highlight that informs the donor of how the support helped to creat positive change;
>have the thank you come from one who has really been helped by the support;
>share even seemingly insignificant progress;
>say thank you with a QR Code that links to a clip of you or your clients expressing gratitude.
Please feel free to share some of your creative thank yous with us.
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Designing a piece that marries beautiful design with new technology.
Customized QR Codes
QR codes are quick response barcodes that you have seen on everything from products, to magazines to buildings.
The problem is the basic QR code is rather dull and does nothing to improve the look of your piece.
However, QR codes do not need to be basic or dull! You can include your logo, change the color or even add textures to the QR code so it fits in with the design of your piece.
Sample 1: The Brick Appeal
The customer wanted a QR code for their brick order form, but did not want to detract from their design. Rescigno’s was able to create a QR code that looked like it was made out of bricks.
Sample 2: Stained Glass
The challenge was to create a QR code that followed the flowing lines of the stained glass window in the background, while still being able to be scanned.
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Fundraising doesn’t always come easy. This is why it can be imperative to understand how to connect with your donors and recognize the reasons behind their giving to your cause.
It all starts with the availability of money a person has to give away. If donors don’t have it, they can’t give it. If they are able to give, this is usually where small donations come into play. With this being said, larger amounts of money to be donated are usually planned in advance.
Once a donor has given to your charity, this makes them more likely to give again. Giving is habit forming and if you follow up with a sincere “thank you” followed by another request it keeps your organization fresh in your donor’s mind.
An incentive to giving is in the urgency of your appeal. If your donor knows their gift is going to be put into use now, or their help is needed as soon as possible, they may be more willing to give.
Essentially, making your donors feel as if they belong to a community of people pushing for a particular cause helps to build lasting relationships.
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