ROI on Direct Mailing - Is it worth it?

According to the latest survey by global research company, YouGov, direct mail is still the strongest tactic for donations, aside from donating to a regularly supported charity.  

The November 2013 survey of over 1,150 U.S adults, finds:

One-fifth (21%) of respondents cited direct mail solicitations as the prompt for their most recent gift.

Mail arriving in the home is particularly successful with those over age 55; 25% of those 55+ made their last gift in response to direct mail compared to 14% of 18-34 year olds.

Lower income households also respond strongly to direct mail with 29% of those earning $40k or less responding to direct mail for their last donation, compared to 18% of those earning $80k+.  

More than one in 10 (12%) report being prompted for their last gift by something they heard about on the radio, on TV or in print.  It seems a stronger prompt for men (14%) than women (10%). 

One in 5 (21%) of those who have supported a crisis or disaster related charity in the last 12 months were motivated by mass media for their last charitable gift.

Although social media has yet to take off as a major prompt, with only 6% of adults responding to Facebook or Twitter for their last gift, social media has become a motivator for 18—34 year olds. 

11% of the younger demographic responded to social media for their last donation, compared to only 3% of those 55+.   

About: Total sample size was 1,157 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken November 22-25, 2013.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all US adults (aged 18+).

Source: YouGov, YouGov Giving Report 2013, December 12, 2013