The world is literally louder than at any prior time in known history (maybe the dinosaurs made a lot of noise?)

Emergency sirens need to be loud enough to cut through the noise clutter and as such, are a good proxy for the loudness of our world.  Today’s sirens are 6x louder than 100 years ago.

The National Park Service’s Natural Sounds and Night Skies Division says noise pollution doubles or triples every 30 years.

This noise is a threat to our health and not just the threat of hearing loss.  Noise activates our flight/fight response and causes stress linked to stroke and depression among other things.  In a Manhattan school in the 70s a researcher found that classroom test scores facing the elevated subway track lagged a year behind quieter classrooms on the other side of the building.

Reducing noise is good but the power of silence creates a multiplier effect and the real value-add.

An experiment randomly assigned mice to one of several test conditions with two hours a day of different noises – ambient noise, mice baby sounds, Mozart and silence.  They measured cell growth in the part of the brain associated with memory.

Silence won.  Listening to silence can enrich our capacity to think and perceive.

What the hell does this have to do with fundraising?  This chart courtesy of Moore owned Audience First Media shows how many times people were mailed in acquisition the prior 12 months.

Reading the first row – 17% of the mailings and 45% of the humans and the highest number of responses came from those mailed only one time.  At the bottom, yes,  it appears 13 humans got mailed 24 times.   This is a very worthwhile analysis but for today’s post I’d draw your attention to the purple box I added.

You know what I’d call that?

An increasingly desperate cry for silence as the # of mailings per person grows.  In fact, the Audience First folks counseled as much, suggesting leaving these folks who are getting 5 or more mailings out of some of the mailings – “let them rest”, was, I think, the expression.

I’d agree but add, let them listen to the silence.  That’s the real value.