Yesterday, Roger offered "contrarian" views on fundraising in the recession from "dean of fundraising copywriters" Jerry Huntsinger.

Here’s more to chew over regarding fundraising tactics in tough times from AB Data consultant Jeff Malloch. Jeff is particularly unhappy over cost-cutting advice proffered in the Chronicle of Philanthropy back on December 11.

Here’s a snippet to give you a sense of his POV. But he "rebuts" the advice given in the Chron articles very carefully — and to my mind — correctly. His full response is worth a read.

"One of the unfortunate offshoots of the difficult economic times in which we live today is that development officers and nonprofit leaders are under enormous pressure to cut costs in the face of declining revenue. All too often, this leads to really bad decisions …

In the December 11, 2008 edition of the Chronicle of Philanthropy, the article “Trying to Spread the Giving Spirit” surveyed what various charities were doing to "ensure that donations flow over the holidays." Unfortunately, the article was short on new or innovative ideas for nonprofit mailers and long on various cutbacks and economies that some groups seem to think made a lot of sense.

Make no mistake — every nonprofit should be looking for ways to reduce its direct mail costs. The danger, of course, is making knee-jerk decisions that seem sensible on the surface, but have the potential to profoundly impact direct marketing revenues in both the short and long term. Test. Don’t panic. And remember that cost cutting is only desirable if it contributes to higher (or stable) net revenues."

So, tell us what you think.

Tom

P.S. Back on Nov 21st, Roger and I conducted an hour-long telebriefing on raising funds in tough times. You can download the audio file, as well as the "ten tips" each of us separately prepared, right here.

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