At least according to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal.

They call it Snail Mail in the article, a term that I have come to loathe, but am willing to overlook when I hear this sort of good news:

“Looking to cut costs amid the recession, Alicia Settle initially thought it would be a good idea to eliminate her company’s annual direct mailing. Spending about $20,000 on the personally signed letters, which offered customers a discount on early orders, seemed indulgent for Per Annum Inc., which sells city diaries, albums, and planners in the struggling corporate gift market. But after swapping snail mail for email last year, Ms. Settle saw a 25% drop in early orders compared with the same period the previous year.”

“We realized we had made a huge mistake,” says Ms. Settle, president of the New York firm.”

And Ms. Settle is not alone.

Lots of non-profits stopped sending direct mail prospecting in 2008-2009 to cut costs.

Lately they have been back in force, perhaps with a bit more caution than before, but with the realization that if you don’t go out looking for donors, they are unlikely to come to you by themselves.

And as trite as it may sound, you can still hold a piece of mail in your hand, sit down, read it at your leisure and write a check.

It may be a bit old-fashioned, but it still works.