Brewer Direct


New media can be a puzzle! With so many fundraising channels these days, creating media that’s consistent is a huge new challenge for nonprofits. Here’s our take on successfully developing more of your media.

by Randy Brewer

Take it from me – despite the dramatic proclamations (for the last 20 years), direct mail fundraising is NOT dead.

(By the way, if you haven’t read my recent thoughts on this, click here!)

Giving USA reported that 2017 giving exceeded $400 billion for the first time, 79% of which came from individuals (outright gifts and bequests). According to NonProfit Source, every $167 spent on direct mail in the U.S. sees a return of $2,095, on average.

But direct mail is no longer the only media out there we, as fundraisers, can utilize. So we shouldn’t put our blinders on when it comes to developing and integrating new media that can only enhance our mail programs.

Just look at how online giving has grown!

  • Charitable online giving is up 10.6% as of April 2018.
  • Email messaging drove 28% of all online revenue in 2017.
  • 55% of people who engage with nonprofits on social media take some sort of action, whether it’s donating money, clothing or food, attending an event or volunteering.
  • 25% of donors now complete their donations on a mobile device.

And this hardly touches on dozens of other media and channels available to us for use of fundraisers.

When it comes to our Brewer clients, we integrate multiple channels with our direct mail program. Using direct mail is an effective foundation to enhance everything from church partnerships and public relations to acquiring new donors.

Here are two ways we can think about integrating new media into fundraising programs:

      1. Horizontal Integration. Take your direct mail campaign strategies and offers and spread that same message across all your channels to create more impressions in a donor’s mind, improving your chances of reaching your audience with that message.
        It can often take a dozen or more impressions to reach a potential donor.

      3. Vertical Integration. Building on your horizontal integration, seek out ways to use media to further develop and expand your message across all your channels. An example of this might be using blog content on your website and/or a series of social media posts to preview a specific seasonal campaign or a compelling newsletter story in the mail.


Direct mail fundraising is certainly not dead. It’s a very important channel in your arsenal and should be recognized as such. But organizations must go beyond direct mail to reach more donors and potential donors with their messaging, online and off. The more channels you can utilize and the more media you can vertically integrate to get your message out, the stronger your fundraising program will be.

By adding all the right pieces to your media mix, you’ll increase response rates from existing donors – and find new donors who you never had a chance to reach previously.


photo of Randy Brewer - non profit marketing


Does your organization need expert guidance in expanding your reach beyond direct mail? Randy can help! Get in touch with Brewer Direct’s President/CEO Randy Brewer by clicking here.



Tell us your favorite media channels to use for fundraising @brewerdirect!

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