Calendar Year End Email series drives significant revenue

Calendar Year End
Date Published
09/06/2018
Author
Kate Ryan

The Situation

Southern California classical music station KUSC had always focused its fundraising efforts around traditional channels, leveraging direct mail and email around on-air membership drives in January, April, and September. Though these campaigns had always been successful in their own right, KUSC wanted to increase revenue at Calendar-Year-End (CYE), when there was no membership campaign to fundraise around.

The Strategy

KUSC wanted to set the right tone in this CYE campaign, because classical music donors generally have a high average gift and retention rate. Together, Allegiance Fundraising and KUSC developed an email series for current and lapsed donors to remind them that time was running out to make a tax-deductible gift for 2017. 

The emails, presented as helpful and encouraging, rather than pushy, included a “Countdown” headline, consistent branding throughout the series, and included a “thank-you” message. The emails increased urgency with each send and blasted in the last week of December including the 31st.

The ResultsCalendar Year End

The Calendar-Year-End emails were a big success overall. Average gift for the series was $112, and the final net revenue was more than 30 times the cost for the project. The station is thrilled in the investment it made in its Calendar-Year-End fundraising tactics and has included a repeat of the effort in 2018.

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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