Wayne State University – Giving Day Direct Mail Appeal

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TitleGiving Day Direct Mail Appeal
InstitutionWayne State University
Submitted ByJeanine Simnick
Director of Annual Giving
CategoryDirect Mail Appeals
Institution TypeCollege / University
What fiscal year did this effort occur?2020

Wayne State implemented a new Giving Day direct mail piece that encouraged early gifts. Target DM pops were past GD donors, faculty/staff and donors of the last three years with no email. The piece encouraged donors to visit our early access GD site or to use the GD remittance envelope.

What makes this unique

This was a unique piece and strategy for Wayne State in which we encouraged early Giving Day gifts and personally invited people to an early access website. September 17, 2020 was our 4th Giving Day and had been rescheduled (usually held in April). The piece also spoke to the increased need to make giving more convenient for donors, especially in a time with a lot of change in people’s lives.


Giving Day results this year had a 29% increase in cash/pledges and a 69% increase in unique donors. The appeal dropped right before Labor Day, Giving Day was September 17, and we accepted gifts from the appeal through September 30. Even though direct mail gifts accounted for 20% of the gifts received, per our appeal code, it is safe to assume that the mail piece contributed to the overall outcome of online gifts (online giving was promoted on the DM).