Catching up on my blogs today, I came across an interesting rant from Hildy on Direct Mail Fundraising is Junk Mail.

Here’s a taste:

Have our organizations ever spent as much time trying to engage the people who come through our doors as we spend trying to “acquire new donors”? Have we spent time to ask those who already know us – ask for their wisdom, their advice about the work we are doing? How often do we ask the people who are already our clients, our patrons, our program participants – if they would like to help make our mission stronger?

Give it a read. Even if you don’t agree with everything she says, you’ll benefit from her perspective.

It’s challenging me to re-think the time I allocate to direct mail versus true face-to-face involvement with the friends of the hospital. It takes lots of time to meet one-on-one, but so does this blasted direct mail. Writing, proofing, editing, creating a package, going over the list, again, and again. Yuck.

As she says:

I am often told, “But engaging the community like that would take time. We can’t afford to do that!” Translated: We can’t afford to do what works. So instead we will do something far less effective – with the added bonus that most people hate it!

Thanks Hildy! (And I suspect the friends of this hospital will thank you too!)

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