Heifer International is fortunate to receive donations and gifts through numerous channels-by U.S. mail, by electronic transfer, by the web, by gifts dropped off or delivered to the international headquarters or one of the organization's training centers, etc. The majority of these gifts result from information people receive via mail or email, including program updates, match opportunities, special campaigns and the like.
It is this information, these stories of how your gift makes a difference around the world, that is the motivation behind the gift. For example, someone who receives a mail piece may find it easier to call in a gift, or go online to make the gift through our secure website, but the initial motivation may have come from something they received in the mail.
Heifer monitors operational costs, and as a result, we regularly review all of our outreach efforts, especially direct donor engagement such as direct mail. We competitively price materials and production costs to ensure we are getting the best value possible. We use Earth-friendly materials such as paper and ink, and are fortunate to work with companies that give us extensively reduced rates or even pro-bono options.
We use surveys and other tools to understand from donors how they prefer to be communicated with. The greatest request is to receive printed materials in the mail. We complement this with electronic mailings such as emails and electronic newsletters, but mail pieces are the most requested and have historically provided Heifer the greatest response.