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600% Increase in Response Rates With Personalization

YMCA had a large amount of personalized data for their members. However, they struggled with how to implement a direct mail strategy to create a personal touch to their fundraising efforts.

  • SmartQ Data Intelligence
  • Direct Mail
  • Variable Data

Leveraging Data for Personalization


With a large membership base and rich data, the YMCA was uniquely positioned to leverage personalized data for their fundraising efforts. They knew which members had children, which members were seniors, and which members were interested in camps or lessons. However, they had no way to maximize this information to aid in building a more committed donor base.


The key to success for YMCA was analyzing the existing data sets and crafting strategic, personalized direct mail campaigns using membership data. ROI was based on increasing the engagement and giving rates.

Personalization based on location

Bolger’s crafted a strategy that leveraged a goldmine of client data to use one of four unique color photographs for each location on both the mailing envelope and the cover letters. Additionally, the business reply envelope had the location address listed for a more personal experience. Together, the campaign gave the recipient the sense that their donation would benefit a specific location directly.

Training Sessions

Our production teams met with various YMCA team members and taught them how to set up files, use proper templates, naming conventions, and processes to streamline the front-end work and reduce their pre-press costs by keeping more of the work in-house.

The Results

By leveraging client data accurately and with a personal touch, the YMCA saw an immediate 600% increase in donor response rates.

Learn more about how smarter direct mail can work for you.