E-Renewals successful first step toward digital fundraising
Alabama Public Television has a mature and successful direct mail program. However, APT had not done a lot of digital fundraising and wanted to implement an e-renewal series to augment the direct mail and generate more online activity.
Send members with an email address on file, receiving notices 1, 3, and 4, an e-renewal on the 25th of each month — the same day the mail drops. Use direct and short copy in the email, but reflect the general message that is conveyed in the mail.
The e-renewals have been a big success. The open rate is over 30%, and the click-through rate is nearly 13%! Overall, nearly 2% of the members who opened the email ended up making a gift. Those in the notice 4 group, who receive the email just after their membership expired, had the highest conversion rate of the three segments at over 4%! The station is thrilled in the investment it has made in e-renewals.
Based on the strong response, we think the e-renewal program can sustain a more aggressive email strategy. We recommend:
- Adding e-renewals in notices 2 and 5.
- Adjusting the timing and message in notice 4. Rather than keeping the message consistent with direct mail (which arrives after that group is past the expiration date), send an email on the last day of the month indicating that the recipient’s membership expires at midnight.
- Adjusting the timing to deploy closer to the in-home date to see if there is more lift when the two communications are received closer in time
We will also explore other opportunities for email fundraising.