Joint Licensee Improves Upon Acquisition Excellence

Radio Case Study
Date Published
Kate Ryan

Adding radio-specific prospects to direct-mail-acquisition campaign yields even higher response rate and much lower net cost to acquire.

A public media joint licensee, with a long history of a solid and cost-effective direct mail acquisition program, had a tradition of only mailing new donor acquisition campaigns during on-air TV drives because they have so many more TV donors than radio. Although the mailings were strategically-timed to drop during the TV pledge drive, the messaging highlighted both a TV and radio programming to appeal to the broadest possible audience. 

Then, in FY18, as a result of an annual analysis performed by Allegiance Fundraising of the station’s new donor acquisition strategies, we determined that there was an opportunity to increase the total acquisition mail volume, which would lead to even more new donors for the station. Instead of simply increasing the mail quantity in the existing campaigns, AFG recommended that the station test adding a radio-specific letter with program-focused messaging that would mail during the radio drive. No other changes were made to the existing direct mail acquisition program.  

The results? The results for the acquisition campaigns that mailed around the TV drives remained strong and comparable to the prior year. However, the new radio campaign yielded a 15% higher response rate than the station’s traditional campaign. The net cost to acquire a new donor was significantly lower for radio segments too.

The test was repeated in fall 2018 to validate results. This time the radio campaign prospects had a 31% higher response rate, and again a much lower cost to acquire. 

The approach was rolled out in Spring 2019 and has become a vital part of the station’s ongoing new donor acquisition strategy. 

About the Author:
Kate Ryan
Account Director, Agency Services

Role at the Company

My role involves helping fundraisers find and keep loyal donors while making a positive impact in their communities. Every day, I apply whole-brain solutions to the work I do, using analytics, creativity, and a big dose of nerd to help our clients succeed.

What excites you about your work at AFG?

I love data! And having client-side experience with all three divisions of AFG allows me to rev that motor in a big way.

If you weren’t at AFG, what would you be doing?

Running an apocalypse-themed bowling alley and bar. Probably goat yoga. Managing my kids’ Youtube careers.

What are your hobbies/interests outside AFG?

Spending time with said children, acrylic fluid painting, traveling, bowling (really!), reading, and if there’s time after, a good zombie movie.

What’s something most people don’t know about you?

The first time I was ever in a plane, I jumped out. That one time I skydived was pretty cool!

What’s your favorite childhood memory?

As a kid, my family went to Tablerock Lake for our summer vacation. We had a small motorboat that was just big enough for the five of us, and my brother and I learned to waterski soon enough. One morning, dad threw out the ropes and off we went. We tooled around the lake for a long time, neither of us willing to take the first fall of the day. Dad kept circling the boat, forcing us to jump the wakes – still neither of us would take the dive. Finally ran the boat entirely out of gas just outside our cove. Dad got towed back. We had to swim.

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