Ryan Higginson By Ryan Higginson
May 25th, 2021

Eight reasons mail is the right channel for fundraisers to use now

Customer Acquisition | Inspiration

This guest blog post exploring the power and effectiveness of mail for charities has been written by Ryan Higginson, Vice President & UK/ROI Country Leader, Sending Technology Solutions, Pitney Bowes.

Charities have reached a tipping point. 75% anticipate higher demand for their services in 2021, but 83% forecast a decline in their income. The impact of cancelled events and fundraisers is intensified by donors’ own economic uncertainty. In 2019, the London Marathon raised a record-breaking £66.4m for charity. In 2020, this was down 75% to £16m as the official race was postponed. Charities reliant on cash donations are also hugely impacted, not only because face-to-face events were cancelled but also because we’re fast becoming a contactless, cash-free society.

It’s no surprise that the Charities Aid Foundation found 42% of charities they spoke to said they were worried about having to reduce the services they offered, and consultancy Pro Bono Economics identified a £10 billion funding gap between income and investiture.

At the same time – and offering some hope – UK citizens’ philanthropic nature seems stronger than ever. The amount raised by Captain Sir Tom Moore for the NHS in 2020 totalled £32.7 million – a record-breaking amount for an individual walk. Almost half the survey respondents in a Charities Aid Foundation/ YouGov survey felt that the pandemic had made them more conscious of people in need in their local communities. In the first six months of 2020, individual giving was £800m higher than the same period in 2019. With the removal of most face-to-face opportunities for donations, not-for-profit organisations are turning to traditional channels to generate funding. Printed mail is driving action, and research shows that – perhaps because it stands out above digital noise - it’s proving more popular than ever before with younger audiences.

Four out of five fundraisers have cited mail as a key part of their fundraising programme, according to the Chartered Institute of Fundraising. Here are eight reasons why mail is proving an invaluable channel for fundraisers in 2021.

1. Mail matters now more than ever

40% of respondents in a 2020 study cited by Royal Mail MarketReach agree or strongly agree that being in lockdown made them realise how important mail is to them. 88% reported paying as much or more attention to mail. With more people than ever working from home, the arrival of mail each working day can be a welcome distraction.

2. Its tone and messaging can be sensitively crafted

Maintaining a sensitive message and hitting the right tone has never been as important as it is now. No organisation wants to ostracise itself from communities or individuals. Being mindful of – and sensitive to – each unique different circumstance is critical. A personalised, printed mailing ensures messages are carefully crafted and considered, communicated with gravitas and sincerity.