AccuList USA provides mailing lists and direct marketing support for a growing number of museum and zoo marketers. We thought our museum and zoo clients, and other nonprofit marketers, would be interested in recent case studies of how combining direct mail with digital marketing can successfully drive gift membership purchases. The case studies were presented by The Lukens Company, a nonprofit agency, for the American Museum Membership Conference.
Postcards-With-E-mails Strategy Addresses Flagging ROI
Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo was concerned that its costly traditional direct mail letter package promoting gift memberships was experiencing declining ROI and relied on a complex process for signup. Tasked with finding solutions, the agency came up with a new two-drop postcard combined with a three-part e-mail series timed after a Cyber Monday campaign. The campaign directed recipients to an online signup with a promo code to track gift sales. Targeting prior gift membership purchasers and offering a standard $15 discount, the new approach resulted in a 173% increase in number of purchases and 88% increase in revenue.
Energizing Existing & New Audiences
A similar strategy provided positive ROI results for a gift membership drive by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) in its first holiday season after reopening following a three-year closure. Marketers faced a dual challenge: fatigue of the traditional direct mail package to the existing gift membership audience, plus a new audience unfamiliar with SFMOMA gift membership offerings. Seeking to energize both targets, the agency’s creative shifted from the traditional package to a two-drop postcard and five-part e-mail series, directing recipients online to a new custom landing page, along with phone and onsite support. Mailing to current members, lapsed members, and general admission and event ticket buyers, the campaign offered 10% off gift memberships for members and prospects who became members.
More Ways DM Can Drive Online Action
Based on its results with its postcards-with-e-mails campaigning, The Lukens Company suggests additional ways to boost online results via direct mail: 1) include URLs in all direct mail pieces, especially typing-friendly, memorable URLs; 2) encourage online renewals (“go green”) in early direct mail and e-mail renewal notices; and 3) offer specific online-only incentives for renewing early. See actual creatives, and more case studies of direct mail for onsite action, at http://americanmuseummembership.org/uploads_ed/files/Using%20Direct%20Mail%20to%20Drive%20Action_AMMC%202017.pdf