Google the word “famously, short term memory holds only about 7 chunks of information, and these fade from your brain in about 20 seconds.”
I came across line this in an article on web usability, googled to for a source, got lots of hits, but my own short term interest couldn’t keep me going long enough to find why this is so “famous.” Just is. Like Paris Hilton.
Anyway, the article from Jason Nielsen’s Alert Box is worth your attention (as is the Alertbox). Good tips for the web the importance of quick response time, leaving breadcrumbs so people can tell where they’ve been and how to get back, etc.
This famous truth also applies to many mail and email fundraising dynamics:
If someone sets aside your mail or scrolls past your email, you chances of being remembered and gaining a gift are close to nil. Watch your carrier teasers and subject lines.
If your communication is chock full of “what we’re doing” information about your organization, you’ll lose attention and readership. Keep copy focused. It’s far easier to keep JUST ONE THING in the mind. And heart.
Might argue against multiple inserts in mail. TMI.
Also surely points to the downside of brochure-style graphic emails. (Besides x’d out images and weak call to action.)
All supporting the famous KISS approach to communication. Since neither you nor your donors are stupid, this acronym stands for
“Keep it simple and straightforward”
or, in any medium: “Keep it simple and sequential”.