by Shanley Knox
When setting out to create an effective email marketing campaign, there are many questions you may be asking...
- What magic subject line will get your subscribers to open your email?
- How do you get them to click your links?
- What is just the right length to get your readers to actually digest your content?
- How do you get them to share, to buy, or to donate?
Email marketing presents a significant opportunity for companies and causes to connect directly with an audience that has already exhibited interest. That being said, in order to see a monetary return on your audience's interest, you need to ensure you provide ongoing value.
1. Make a Clear Connection
Your readers should always be able to tell exactly why you’re emailing them. For example, if their last donation contributed to a fundraising goal, craft a message that ensures they walk away feeling accomplished and part of a community. If you're currently seeking funding, clearly outline the project and the various ways they can help.
2. Give Social Proof
Social proof is a psychological phenomenon that occurs when people assume the actions of others are correct; and subsequently, follow in their footsteps. How do you accomplish this through email marketing? Show how your followers have previously taken part in your cause. This can be done via group photos, social shares, or creative examples of support, such as charity: water’s collage below.
If the purpose of your email is fundraising, personalize your financial ask... How many people have opted in to helping you reach your goal thus far? How much have they donated? How far are you from your goal? What is this dollar amount accomplishing? All of these factors help your readers to feel that your goal is realistic, and encourages them to take action. Below is an example of how the American Heart Organization employed this strategy to effectively raise money for cardiovascular disease.
In this case study, emails with personalized subjects average 26% higher open rates and over 130% higher CTRs than emails without personalized subject lines. Unfortunately, the study also showed that personalized subject lines received increased negative attention if the emails were off target, or recipients did not recognize the sender. We've seen similar results with our clients. Some tips to ensure you’re positively capitalizing on personalization:
- Target your messaging to specific groups of followers, rather than sending out one large email across your master list. A/B testing via MailChimp is a great way to better understand (and effectively target your content to) your audience.
- For first time emails to new subscribers or donors, make sure to send an introductory email welcoming them to your cause and letting them know that they are important to you.
4. Make Donations Easy
Finding your donation button should be seamless for your email readers. Make sure that it is aesthetically in line with the rest of your email, and placed just prominently enough, but not so obvious that it appears you are begging for help.
Also, after your followers click through, it’s important to make the actual donation process an easy one. Not sure where to start? Here’s a list of 5 of the best tools available for accepting donations online.
For further reading: