10 elements of breakthrough acquisition control

Acquisition means not only acquiring donors but also acquiring the best means of securing as many donors as possible who will donate as much money as possible.

Speaking during the recent Direct Marketing Association (DMA) Nonprofit Federation Conference, Jennifer Vanderveld, Betsy Watson and Linda Maska of Lautman Maska Neill & Company discussed acquisition and the best ways to get the most out of it. Much of acquisition is simply applying age-old principles that have shown themselves to be fruitful, but also being aware of the need to tweak certain ideas or approaches as the need arises over time.

Vnderveld, Watson and Maska gave the following tips about breakthrough acquisition control, which they said means getting new donors who not only will stay with the organization but also will upgrade over time, at the lowest possible investment cost by the organization. To that end, it is necessary to write a strong acquisition letter:

  • Include a strong case for support;
  • Illustrate how the organization provides a solution to a problem;
  • Show how the organization is uniquely able to provide this solution;
  • Establish credibility;
  • Tell stories;
  • Be emotional;
  • Show how the donor can make an impact;
  • Ask;
  • Ask again; and,
  • Be a little bit repetitive.