Museum Meets Goal with Data, Direct Mail Campaign
The Multi-Cultural Heritage Museum (MCHM) preserves and shares the traditions of nearly two-dozen distinct cultural groups while advancing intercultural education and good will between the groups. The museum is supported through memberships, donations and paid programs and events. For their annual fundraising campaign, MCHM wanted to gain new members, increase donations, and raise awareness of the paid programs and events available to the community at large.
Knowing that targeted direct mail can be highly effective for non-profit fundraising, we started by reviewing the analytics of MCHM’s existing member and donor database. With a clearer picture of the ideal member/donor profile, we purchased a data list of 26,000 prospects, and then developed a direct mail campaign targeted toward current members as well as lapsed and prospective donors.
Messaging and imagery were determined by:
- Cultural theme: the importance of preserving and sharing ones heritage
- Age group/family status: for example, young professionals received images of multi-cultural networking events at the museum
- Membership/donor status: used to determine whether the recipient was offered a free membership with donation, a reduced membership rate or free admission to select events with an upgrade to existing membership.
- All mailings included an offer to introduce a friend to the museum with free admission for two to one of five annual events.
The mailers included a targeted letter and flyer and a business response envelope. A campaign URL was also included for recipients who wished to join or donate online. In total, 62,000 letters were mailed. Where emails were available, a reminder email was deployed a week after the initial mailing.
The targeted, integrated campaign lifted MCHM’s response rate significantly. At 2.1%, it was double the rate of their previous campaign, which used general messaging. Membership increased by 7.3% and donations totaled $196,000, representing a 17% increase. Fifty-two percent of donations came through the campaign URL, 48% were mailed.