Nature Conservancy of Canada: legacy mailing

Exhibited by
David Love.
Added
April 09, 2009
Medium of Communication
Direct mail.
Target Audience
Legacy, major gift.
Type of Charity
Environmental / animals.
Country of Origin
Canada.
Date of first appearance
2002.

SOFII’s view

This is a straightforward but very good example of a nonprofit attempting to access what’s been referred to as ‘the pot of gold at the end of the fundraiser’s rainbow’ – the potential over years for developing substantial legacy income from a well maintained warm donor file. Without doubt, this carefully and sensitively crafted pack will raise funds very effectively for the cause and the organisation that created it.

Creator / originator

David Love and Stephen Thomas Associates.

Summary / objectives

This mailing attempts to find donors who would consider leaving a legacy – particularly, a gift in their Will – to NCC.

Background

Encouraging direct mail donors to leave a legacy presents those organisations that have invested in building a direct mail donor file with the opportunity to raise billions of dollars for their cause.

Special characteristics

This is a simple direct mail appeal with an unusual call to action.

Influence / impact

This piece has been mailed many times by NCC. As a result, they now have hundreds of donors who intend to leave a gift in their Will. At an average of $25,000, this translates into serious money invested in protecting Canada’s most precious places.

Costs

About $2.00 per person contacted.

Results

Initial results were stunning, with about 13 per cent of recipients responding to the initial mailing of 5,000 pieces. And four per cent (180 people) indicated they were interested in leaving a legacy to NCC. Every time this piece is mailed, more people commit to leaving a legacy.

Merits

There is immense potential in writing to loyal direct mail donors, asking them to leave a legacy to a cause they care deeply about. The potential revenue for causes such as the environment, human rights, the women’s movement and other ‘social justice’ causes is astronomical. As British author George Smith so eloquently put it, in the title of his book on fundraising creativity, we simply have to ‘Ask Properly’.

A warm, attractive package with the maple key emblem, symbol of Canada’s national tree, acting as an intriguing involvement device.
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The NCC legacy pack letter, four pages.
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NCC legacy pack reply form, two pages.

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