I was shocked when I found a 8 ½% duplicate rate on my client’s house file. I immediately called the company responsible for maintaining the data. “How could you let this happen?”
Their response? 5% duplicates are “industry standard.” This isn’t so bad.
Let’s do the math on that. My client had an 8 1/2 % duplicate rate on their house list. That’s the important list of people who have already made donations to my client. But let’s simplify it and use that “industry standard” duplicate rate of 5%. How much is that 5% costing my client every year?
So let’s say that my client has 50,000 names on hits house list. And it mails its house list 12 times a year. What are those duplicates costing? Well, if you figure it costs 60¢ to write, print, personalize, insert, and mail the letter to the house list, that means my client is spending $30,000 a month to raise money from its house list. Which isn’t so bad considering that those donors will probably give $1.50 a piece, grossing my client $75,000. After that cost of $30,000, my client will net $45,000 to pay for its important charitable work.
But wait. We’re figuring on a 5% duplication rate. Which means that every month our client is spending $425 just to mail duplicate letters. By the end of the year, they’ve spent $5,100 mailing duplicates. That’s not all of the list funds, though. Because my client also has an angry donor. When you receive duplicate letters at home, do you read one? Or do both go in the trash. My answer is the latter. The duplicates on your list are costing you a lot more than you think.