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Mar 15

Hand Addressing Envelopes for Fund Raising Success

In direct mail work there are various ways to increase opening rates such as envelope design, teasers, live postage stamps rather than bulk indicia, and so forth. One technique of special interest to those in fund development is hand addressing of envelopes.

RightOnResults.com offers a number of reasons why hand addressing makes sense:

  • Higher opening rates
  • Communicates a “personal touch”
  • Stands out from other mail (and your competition)
  • Higher response rates and thus, ROI

The Newsletter on Newsletters reports that one mail house, Fasprint, conducted research finding that nearly 100% of all hand-addressed, delivered mail gets opened – compared to only 14% of mail that is machine addressed or labeled. That means that 86 out of every 100 pieces that you send out end up in the trash, according to the firm.

Of course, hand addressed envelopes do not qualify for bulk rates, but the first class postage that this approach requires is also shown to increase response.

Sources for Hand Addressing
While there are many firms available for envelope addressing using calligraphy such as done for wedding invitations, a standard cursive approach is more appropriate for most fund development and business situations. For non-profits, hosting an “addressing party” with volunteers who have neat handwriting may be a good option, especially for smaller mailings. In other situations, one may want to consider a firm that offers this specialized service, such as:

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