How This Non-Profit Increased Online Donations 170% With Direct Mail

“Fundraising for nonprofits is crucial, which is why we always choose direct mail,” says Scott Hayden, Executive Director of Adirondack Folk School. “No other type of marketing gives us the return on investment that direct mail does, and The Mailworks is a big part of that equation. Their online store makes the entire process seamless, and their quality and service is second to none.”



  • Drive donations and financial support for Adirondack Folk School amid a year of unprecedented challenges.
  • Highlight Adirondack Folk School’s mission of preserving crafts and culture in the Adirondacks.
  • Showcase the artwork produced by students under Adirondack Folk School’s tutelage.
  • Increase online donations by driving traffic to the Adirondack Folk School website as an alternative donation method.


  • 170% increase in online donations
  • 133% increase in donation response rate
  • 2X increase in annual donations
  • 5,000+ letters sent


Campaign Details

Adirondack Folk School (AFS) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization, unique for its dedication to teaching the arts, crafts, and cultural heritage of the Adirondack region. In order to fund the year-round classes offered at their Lake Luzerne location, AFS relies heavily on donations.

To stage a comeback from hardship brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, AFS decided to create a direct mail campaign. The campaign’s main goal was to drive financial donations by creating a heartfelt letter from AFS leadership explaining the importance of supporting the arts during a year of unprecedented challenges.

AFS worked with The Mailworks to select a direct mail format that would deliver their message cost effectively and quickly. After consulting with a client advisor, they opted to use a legal letter mailer for their campaign and ordered using The Mailworks online store. The resulting campaign was sent to over 5,000 of AFS’s biggest donors and supporters.

The success of this targeted appeal relied heavily on making donations easy. To do this, the campaign included a pledge card as well as a link to promote online donations. As a result, AFS received a 108% increase in donation response rate from the previous year. They also saw a spike in online donations.

Additionally, The Mailworks was able to use AFS’s nonprofit status to secure them a lower postage rate. This lowered AFS’s postage price per piece approximately 75% from the previous year.

Thanks to Adirondack Folk School’s innovative use of direct mail, support for the arts in New York State’s historic Adirondack Region has never been stronger.


Key Campaign Elements

  • Engaging appeal legal letter mailer featuring a donation pledge card
  • Targeted direct mail list to reach current and past donors
  • Online campaign quoting, ordering and management through