Image by eltoro69 on BigStockPhoto.com
Target audience: Nonprofits, foundations, NGOs, social enterprises, cause organizations, businesses, Web publishers, general public.
Guest post by Carla Chadwick
Creative director, SankyNet
The email marketing and fundraising landscape keeps evolving, and it’s increasingly vital for nonprofits to develop a comprehensive email strategy. We’ve put together a short guide of email best practices to help you better focus their email fundraising and marketing efforts. It never hurts to keep reminding ourselves to focus on the fundamentals!
Here are five tips to keep in mind for your email marketing and fundraising efforts:
1Frequency: There’s a fine line between sending out enough emails to keep people engaged and relay important information, and sending out too many emails, causing open rates to decrease and unsubscribe rates to increase. While it varies among organizations and audiences, a good starting point is ensuring that each constituent typically receives no more than one email per week.
2Subject line: Subject lines should be short; most standards recommend either 35 or 50 characters maximum (including spaces), and testing has shown that shorter is typically better.
3Styling: Always keep web standards in mind to ensure usability. The number of fonts, text sizes, and colors should be limited for the cleanest user experience. Additionally, all text links should be underlined.
4Images: In an HTML email, it is important to include as much text content as possible — the ratio of text to images is a key factor in triggering spam filters. Ideally, images should be gifs instead of jpgs, and images should be compressed so that they are under 250 kilobytes.
5Social media: Excluding fundraising appeals, we recommend including social media engagement in emails, asking people to “like/follow” the organization or “share/tweet” the email.
Email is still one of the best ways to fund-raise and spread your mission online. What are your suggestions on how nonprofits can do email fundraising better?