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Part 2 – The REAL Gifts in the Fundraising Industry

By Ben Harris, President, Production Solutions

Any company serving the direct marketing industry, especially those serving non-profits, should be universally referred to as ESSENTIAL Partners.

We must acknowledge and adopt this Essential Partners terminology to move away from terms like vendor, supplier, printer, mailer, commingler, trucker, etc. Research has proven that changing the way we speak to others (and ourselves) through making better word choices can impact our optimism and improve the willingness of others to hear what we are saying.

These Essential Partners’ resilience, ingenuity, and courage exhibited over the past 800+ days was the reason most, if not all, organizations had some of their best years of fundraising in the past two decades. [Read more]

Part 1 – The REAL Gifts in the Fundraising Industry

By Ben Harris, President, Production Solutions

The global pandemic has been plodding along in the USA for over 800 days, and the most jarring statistics to me are the millions of lives lost, the millions of jobs lost or resigned, and the many millions with increased symptoms of depression or burnout. The pandemic, for many of us, has created this chronic state of powerlessness or languishing – which directly impacts our psychology and effectiveness. [Read more]



Sip, Socialize, and Speed-Network with YDMAW

Being a young professional in direct marketing can prove challenging when you’re new to the industry. Everyone is seemingly already an expert and finding others in the same boat is daunting in a room full of strangers. This has always been a challenge, but that journey became even more difficult after the 2020 COVID outbreak when many companies went fully remote.  While it is important for us to safely start to mingle, build new relationships, and re-establish old connections, we are still finding ourselves in a position where that’s much easier said than done.

For everyone who has felt or continues to feel this way—you are not alone! YDMAW is taking these challenges head-on by creating a young professionals space where we can meet others our own age with diverse experiences and similar ambitions. [read more]

In December 2021, the DMAW community came together in person for the first time in almost two years to award the venerable Hall of Leaders Award, which this year went to Roger Hiyama, Executive Vice President, Solutions & Innovations of Wiland. 

To be recognized, the nominees for the Hall of Leaders award are voted on by previous winners and approved by the DMAW Board, making it truly a peer recognition award. There are four specific criteria for the Award: [read more]

PART II -  Using Premiums to Retain Donors

Ok, so you can get more donors at a nice investment using premiums.  You can even get economies of scale on production, lowering cost per piece because you can find more names to mail.  But now you have a lot of donors who aren’t committed, won’t renew, churn and burn – or so the critics say.  The numbers say something different.

Including premiums strategically in a house file or renewal schedule – starting with repeating your acquisition package at least once or twice a year to those donors – will also increase your response rates.  Improved response rates will increase retention rates.  [read more]

A Brave New World: Changes In Our DM Eco-System

February 25, 2010

By Graham Ruffels I, like many, have increased my reading of trade publications over the past year in order to keep up with what DM thought leaders are saying about where the industry is headed.  You don’t have to read much past the title of most articles and it is obvious –  the multi-channel, closed…

Be Kind and Rewind…Recycle, Reduce, Reuse

February 18, 2010

By Alan Rich In an effort to steer away from the traditional “piece of paper in the tote bag”, sponsors and exhibitors that have been given the opportunity to provide a tote bag insert, are encouraged to think more resourceful, providing useful, valuable and possibly eco-friendly promotional items. Ideas include: :: If sponsor/exhibitor is in…

Content is King

February 11, 2010

 By Jim Davis In direct marketing, one to one communications, relationship management and retention and loyalty, Copy has always been King. So it should be no surprise that now Social Media, Content is King. What is content but copy? It’s as simple as that. Creatively, however, that’s tough.  There always have been stocks of photos…

Twitter as a Direct Response Channel

February 4, 2010

By Hilary Baar Yes, Twitter is now main stream.  When I first learned about Twitter at DMAW’s New Media conference two years ago from Geoff Livingston, I had no idea how it would be used.  The day after the conference, I dutifully went back to my office and signed up for a Twitter account.  And, that’s…

Guide to finding a job in the rough economy – NETWORK NETWORK NETWORK!

January 28, 2010

By Mike Thornsbury As I think back over my years as a member of DMAW (going on 10 years now), I can always point to one of the biggest values I have gotten from the membership, networking.   The strong network of colleagues I have made from DMAW, many of whom I call my very good…

Measure For Measure: Three Things You Can Do Now

January 21, 2010

By Eric Andrade Eric’s views are his own and do not necessarily represent those of the association. David Ogilvy contended that the most important word in advertising is TEST. While he spoke mainly about pre-testing prior to launch, testing is more important than ever as budgets shrink and the demands for accountability are grow. From…

A December to Remember … looking back on 2009

December 10, 2009

Things do get better even when they seem that they never will because life, like the economy, has cycles.