MOAA allocates a significant amount of resources annually to renew members in its PREMIUM tier of membership, while its LIFE membership tier does not require renewal efforts since the membership is for life-term.
PREMIUM members pay $40/year and the one-time fee for LIFE members depends on age (as much as $700). By upgrading PREMIUM Members to LIFE, MOAA can reduce renewal costs while stabilizing its member base for organizational longevity. LMO was tasked with developing a campaign with a compelling story to persuade PREMIUM Members to upgrade to LIFE despite the larger financial commitment.
Through discovery sessions with MOAA and independent market research, we identified our target audience to be an older demographic, averaging 68 years of age. Our strategy leveraged this audience’s preference and receptiveness to direct mail. We optimized this channel further by positioning lifetime membership as an exclusive offer for special members handpicked by MOAA leadership. The result was our President’s Invitation Mailer, a personal appeal directly from MOAA's President, inviting privileged members into the exclusive, inner circle of MOAA LIFE Membership.
The President's Invitation Mailer was sent on his personal stationery, used member personalization throughout, included handwritten notes and contained an embossed member card with the appearance of a high-end credit card to emphasize exclusivity. The First Class postage treatment (multi-stamp) added an additional personal touch. Members that did not respond within two weeks received a follow-up email from MOAA's President reminding them to accept the limited-time offer and upgrade. To maximize response, members were given multiple options to respond: through the mail (Business Reply Envelope) or by phone (unique 1-800 number).
The President’s Invitation Mailer was first tested on a small scale to a test segment of 24,000 PREMIUM Members and successfully upgraded more than 543 to LIFE. These results produced a 21% higher response than MOAA’s existing control package at the time and delivered an incredible 6:1 return on investment.
Our President's Invitation Mailer became MOAA's most successful LIFE upgrade mailer to date and is now the new control package for the annual LIFE upgrade direct mail campaigns. Our most recent upgrade campaign using this invitation package as the new control across all member segments resulted in 1,307 upgrades, a 1.96% response rate, including the highest level of response from the Chapter members segment since 2012.
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