Mal Warwick | Donordigital is thrilled to celebrate several recent direct marketing client successes as the recipient of five 2014 MAXI Awards from the Direct Marketing Association of Washington. Established in 1979, the MAXI Awards program recognizes and honors outstanding achievements in the field of direct marketing. All entries are judged on six criteria: results, strategy, copy, design/format, production, and innovation — with the most weight placed on performance results. No flash-only winners allowed! We are proud recipients of 2014 MAXI Awards for these highly successful projects (click images to expand art): AIDS Project Los Angeles Special Appeal The objective of this special appeal was threefold: 1) to upgrade donors to higher levels of giving; 2) to identify new “mid-level” donors capable of making gifts of $1,000 or more; and 3) to rejuvenate the package format and effectiveness of the long-standing Proposal Appeal — a cornerstone package of AIDS Project Los Angeles’ direct response program that had been fatiguing. The strategically revamped version ended up exceeding all projections! Average gifts went up, costs went down and net revenue jumped up, while generating four times as many mid-level gifts as the prior year. National Organization for Women Lapsed Reinstatement Our goal with this direct marketing effort was to recapture as many lapsed NOW members as possible in an inexpensive format, after they had been through the renewal series but before they fell into a more expensive telemarketing recapture program. This simple but effective package exceeded all expectations and is now a regular part of our ongoing multi-channel efforts to reactivate lapsed donors. Ocean Conservancy Calendar Acquisition One of Ocean Conservancy’s longstanding and best performing acquisition controls has been the calendar package featuring spectacular images from Ocean Conservancy’s annual photo contest. Because of its high perceived value, it inspires a large number of prospective donors to send a gift, who then have relatively high conversion rates and subsequent donor value. Although the calendar is a premium, it reminds donors of the beauty and fragility of the ocean throughout the year. We performed several incremental tests to improve performance which ended up dramatically boosting response rate and increasing the average gift on an already successful package! Ocean Conservancy Fourth Renewal Notice Ocean Conservancy has a growing pool of higher dollar and non-premium acquired donors, but our traditional expire-based renewal series was geared toward renewing lower dollar donors with a premium offer. We decided to create new versions of the first four notices for donors who were more mission focused, asking them to renew their membership in a more personal and compelling way. Our goal was to increase the retention of these donors, because our long-term value reports showed that they were, by far, the most likely donors to upgrade to mid-level or major giving. Women for Women International Sponsorship Conversion Telemarketing Women for Women International is unique in that it matches its donors to women survivors of war in one of eight war torn countries to provide financial assistance and business skills training through a sponsorship program. Sponsors commit to giving $30 per month in addition to a one-time enrollment fee. The goal of this telemarketing campaign was to convert one-time gift donors to monthly sponsors on credit card. This MAXI-winning script was emotionally engaging and harnessed the spirit of global sisterhood. The TM campaign exceeded projections for both sponsor joins and one-time gift revenue and response by 35%! Melissa Ford is a Vice President with Mal Warwick | Donordigital, the integrated fundraising, marketing, and advertising company.