KETR spring fundraiser seeks new members

Apr 7, 2016

KETR is in its Spring Membership Campaign, and while this isn’t necessarily news, it does happen every spring. Every membership campaign is different, and we have particular goals and things that we’re doing this year. Carinne, if you could please explain to us what we’re doing this particular spring drive.

Carinne Manning: This drive the emphasis is on new members, and while that’s usually the case with most drives, we are heavily emphasizing new memberships. And something special that is new to this drive is the KETR Donor Challenge Grant. What we did before the drive, we went to current members of KETR and past members, and said, "Hey let’s pull some money together. Everyone contribute and we can use this money to incentivize new memberships."

Mark Haslett: So what is important to KETR about having a large membership total even if some of these contribution numbers aren’t as high as others?

Manning: Well it’s just like you said, it’s those small amounts when people start out. We’ve told people and listeners throughout the drive that it’s not the size of the gift, it’s just that you’re contributing.  And even 10 or 20 dollars can make a difference. And for example, this morning we had Dr. Lavelle Hendricks on. He’s one of our board members, and he was our guest this morning. He told everybody he knew, ‘hey, call into the radio station and donate $10’ and told them about what we do, and what public radio is and how it’s supported. If you’re out there thinking $10 doesn’t matter, let me tell you it does, because within an hour we had over 50 calls, and they were almost all 10 or 20 or 30 dollars, and we raised over a thousand dollars. And that’s what we’re talking about. When everybody pitches in, it makes a huge difference. It was overwhelming and we’re so thankful for everybody that called in.

Haslett: If half of the people listening who have not given, were to call in right now and give just $10, we could end the drive immediately.

Manning: Yes, and that’s something that a lot of public radio stations do. They say ‘if we can meet our goal, we’ll stop, we’ll get off the air.’ And wouldn’t that be great if we could do that. So we have 48 more memberships to go. So if everyone out there can just pitch in 10 or 20 dollars, it’s going to be matched by that Donor Challenge Grant, and we could end the drive early. Which is something we’ve never been able to do, which I think would be fantastic.

Haslett: Yeah many public radio stations are moving towards that model. Everybody knows that the on-air fundraising isn’t the most enjoyable programming ever. People would rather hear all of whatever it is they’re used to hearing. So to minimize these interruptions, stations have taken to doing lots of mail-outs in order to fundraise from an existing base of members. But we really don’t want to hit up existing members more than we need to. We don’t want to go to the well too many times with people who have already supported, and that’s another reason why we’re really wanting to get new people on board and become part of the extended community of KETR because many hands make light work.

Manning: That’s definitely true because we go to our members a lot, and we’re so thankful for all the support that they provide, but we can’t guarantee that everyone who gave last year or the year before will give again, just for any kind of circumstances that make come up in their lives. And that’s fine but we have to have new members to fill that gap, to continually grow our membership base, and that is what is going to lead KETR to financial sustainability.

Haslett: We’ve been joined by KETR’s Development Coordinator Carinne Manning and KETR’s Spring Membership Campaign continues. Your contribution in any amount will help KETR continue to provide this service to the communities of Northeast Texas. Carinne, that phone number again.

Manning: 800-882-KETR and it’s also 800-882-5387.

Haslett: And of course you can go online to