The Northeast Ohio Division of The Salvation Army (NEOSA) has built a strong, robust ministry that serves the most vulnerable families in the region. But like most nonprofits, the Division was looking for a way to shore up fundraising amid the ebb and flow of seasonal support. Armed with a loyal donor base that believes in their cause, the NEOSA Division seemed primed for a strategy that would generate additional revenue that is stable and dependable.
Employing Grizzard’s pledge strategy, the NEOSA Division began offering donors opportunities to sign up as a monthly partner. Monthly partners are faithful donors who commit to give ongoing gifts in the amount of their choosing — donations that are automatically transferred from their credit card or checking account each month. As part of the strategy, these valuable donors continue to receive special updates, appeals, and newsletters, all to ensure meaningful affirmation and cultivation.
Grizzard’s pledge strategy essentially runs itself, and the benefits are many…
- Reliable revenue
- Increased donor value
- Increased donor retention
- Decreased solicitation costs
For the NEOSA Division, the monthly partner program has been a big win:
Monthly partners have given a cumulative average of 10% of all gifts for 2014, 2015 and 2016.
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San Diego Humane Society had developed a magazine self-mailer which they sent out regularly to a large segment of donors and prospects. Each issue was aesthetically pleasing, filled with articles about how the organization was making a difference for animals, and featured images of cute, furry friends. Unfortunately, the magazine was also expensive. Most issues were barely breaking even.
Grizzard recommended a retooling of the magazine to a less expensive newsletter format. Our creative team developed an 8-page newsletter featuring a separate remit and a reply envelope. But perhaps the biggest difference from the magazine was the shift in tone. Rather than speaking to the organization’s achievements, all of the newsletter content was intentionally designed to be donor-centric — focusing on the impact the donor is making to help animals.
Upon mailing the first two issues, there was no question Grizzard’s newly developed newsletter was the clear winner:
- 465% increase in year-overyear newsletter revenue.
- 10% of all mail revenue for FY16.
- 222% ROI for the first two issues!
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Strategy matches participant files with IP addresses for targeted online messaging.
In the fall of 2015, Michigan Humane Society wanted to lift revenue by increasing the number of participants in their annual Mega March for Animals event. MHS viewed past participants as their primary target and wondered how to reach these folks in a way that would be both successful and cost-effective. Grizzard seized the unique opportunity to communicate with this audience via extremely targeted digital communications.
Grizzard proposed an IP Targeting strategy that worked in tandem with two already-strong MHS campaigns and focused on participants dating back to 2011.Running the clients’ existing participant file against multiple databases, our expert digital team was able to match names and physical addresses with IP addresses. This made it possible to specifically target past participants via online banner ads for a two-week period. The results were just what MHS was hoping for.
- 84,517 impressions
- 17.4 ad frequency.
- 27% click-through rate
In every way, the test group that was targeted outperformed the control group:
- Those targeted by the online ads were 37% more likely to participate.
- 7% of targets participated in the walk (versus 5% of non-targets).
- MHS enjoyed an additional18.7 participants per 1,000people targeted!
Leader Dogs for the Blind initiated a $14.5 million capital campaign to transform their kennel into a world-class Canine Development Center worthy of their extraordinary dogs. They asked Grizzard to help them communicate their vision and needs with donors and non giving volunteers.Of note: Many charities offer naming opportunities with bricks and mortar campaigns (like engraved pathway bricks or honor walls). Unfortunately, an outside consultant recommended against this proven strategy. Consequently, Leader Dog set the bar for name recognition at $7,500 —impossibly high for all but the wealthiest donors.
Grizzard built a compelling integrated campaign centered around a showpiece direct mail appeal. The oversized, 4-colorenvelope included a puppy wearing a hard hat sitting on blueprints, and teasing news about the “biggest campaign” in Leader Dog’s history — a promise the letter quickly paid off. Making a careful case for an upgraded facility without implying dogs were currently under served, donors were asked to make a significant gift. Also included were a highly visual infographic detailing there renovations (easily repurposed for social media) and a remit with an attached bounce back card for display at the Center’s grand opening. This helped compensate for the lack of legacy opportunities. Grizzard then deployed a detailed email with similar messaging,along with links to the Center’s FAQ page and video pages.
By any measure, the Canine Development Center capital campaign was an out standing success.
- Revenue surpassed projections by 2.5 times,exceeding cost by a 5:1margin.
- Nearly 100 volunteers made their first ever gift.
- And nearly half of direct mail donors (46%) upgraded their giving level!
All in all, Grizzard’s integrated capital campaign for LeaderDog made for a very happy client — and more important,helped ensure a successful completion of the Canine Development Center.