WHQR fundraising: effectiveness and efficiency

Mar 5, 2012

Recently we received some good news from a national benchmarking study: WHQR is one of the leading stations in the country in both effectiveness and efficiency of fundraising. A couple of charts illustrating these trends are worth at least a thousand words each:

Effectiveness: the first chart above (click to play a slideshow) shows that WHQR does very well in Net Revenue per Listener Hour. A Listener Hour is how we measure our programming reach, as estimated by Arbitron. 1 Listener Hour equals 1 person listening for an hour; 2 Listener Hours could be 1 person listening for 2 hours, or 2 people each listening for an hour, or any combination thereof. We have about 39,000 listeners per week in our area, and the average hour has 2,200 listeners at any one time. (In a future post I'll delve a little deeper into those numbers).

For fundraising purposes, the greater the amount of revenue (membership plus underwriting and special events) raised per listener hour provides a measure of effectiveness. On this chart of station data, the median level is the purple bar in the middle; WHQR is well to the left, approaching the 90th percentile.

Efficiency: the second chart shows that WHQR does even better in Cost per Dollar for all Fundraising; in other words, how much total resources (salary, materials, postage, etc.) are devoted to fundraising. On this chart of station data, the median level is again the purple column in the middle; WHQR is second among all stations participating in this study, well over the 90th percentile.

I love to see data like this about our station. It shows that we continue to be good and conscientious stewards of the resources our listeners have entrusted to us. In particular the Membership team, led by Mary Bradley, has been extremely effective and efficient in managing our membership process, and for that deserves thanks from all of us.

--Cleve Callison, Station Manager

Source: 2011 National Benchmarking Study from DEI (the Development Exchange, Inc., a nonprofit national clearinghouse for public radio fundraising).