Michigan Radio trumpets successful Spring Membership Drive
Michigan Radio, the public radio service of the University of Michigan, finished a successful spring membership drive on Wednesday. The on-air fundraiser, which ran from March 16-23, generated 8,500 pledges totaling more than $980,000 from donors across southern Michigan and northern Ohio. Overall, the spring 2011 membership drive saw an increase of more than a thirty percent in total dollars raised over last spring's campaign.
As part of the station's effort to reduce on-air fundraising time, Michigan Radio once again used an innovative approach on the first day of the membership drive. The station attempted to raise the entire first day's goal in just one hour, from 7 - 8 a.m. on Wednesday, March 16. This proved to be successful, and the station exceeded its goal of $90,000 by 48%. More than $133,000 in donations came from over 1,150 people who pledged during Michigan Radio's "Power Hour."
"We have deep appreciation for all of our listeners who support us so generously," said Director of Broadcasting Steve Schram. "With this outstanding commitment, Michigan Radio looks forward to continuing our service to the community with in-depth news, talk and intelligent analysis, as we have for over 60 years."
Throughout the membership drive, the recent controversy over federal funding for public media seemed to encourage many listeners to contribute for the first time, or to resume giving after a hiatus. This sample of member comments indicates that the current threat to funding for NPR has increased the awareness and enthusiasm regarding the value of public broadcasting for many listeners:
- "All the talk about Congress cutting funding for NPR made me pledge. Thank you for your outstanding service to the public."
- "An America without NPR is unthinkable."
- "I am returning to giving to Michigan Radio in light of the attacks being made on public broadcasting, the coverage I rely on for basic events, and programs I love...."
- "Great news source--it would be great if contributions could totally sustain NPR."
Michigan Radio receives funding from diverse sources, with approximately 54% coming from individual donors, 21% from business underwriters, 12% from the University of Michigan and 8% from the federal government via the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.