E mail Advertising for Non-profits: Sensible Suggestions and Examples

E mail advertising can do wonders for nonprofit organizations.

From spreading consciousness and constructing relationships with subscribers to turning supporters into donors. E mail advertising will help you obtain all these objectives.

For those who’ve by no means run electronic mail campaigns earlier than, otherwise you’ve executed some however want to make sure you’re doing it accurately, you’re in the proper place.

By means of this text, we’d like to assist your nonprofit group begin utilizing electronic mail advertising to its fullest potential.

Beneath, we’ve gathered all the very best practices, ideas, and nonprofit electronic mail marketing campaign concepts to encourage your individual campaigns.

Let’s begin by reviewing the the reason why electronic mail advertising is efficacious for nonprofits.

Desk Of Contents

Editor’s observe

This text is a content material collaboration between advertising specialists at GetResponse – an electronic mail advertising platform and nonprofit group tech consultants at TechSoup – a nonprofit tech market.

Table of Contents

Why is electronic mail advertising important for nonprofit organizations? 

1. Most of us have an electronic mail tackle 

E mail is simply the most well-liked channel of communication worldwide. It grew to become common as a result of it’s low cost and accessible – nearly everybody who makes use of the Web has an electronic mail account and sends emails. Whether or not you reside in Asia, Europe, Africa, or America – you should utilize electronic mail to speak electronically.

2. E mail is private

E mail advertising permits nonprofits to have interaction with their viewers in a extra private means.

Nonprofits can phase their electronic mail listing based mostly on the pursuits and preferences of their viewers and ship focused electronic mail campaigns that resonate with them.

Personalised emails with related content material and calls-to-action can enhance engagement and drive donations and different types of help.

3. E mail advertising is cost-effective

Most advertising channels are pay-to-play. Even in case you’ve constructed an engaged viewers on Fb, the platform will restrict your natural attain and power you to maintain spending cash on adverts. This isn’t the case with electronic mail advertising.

For those who’ve acquired somebody’s permission to contact them through electronic mail, you’re nearly assured to succeed in their inbox, supplied that you simply comply with electronic mail advertising finest practices.

Consequently, the one factor it’s essential to pay to run electronic mail campaigns is your electronic mail advertising service. Their worth is normally based mostly on the scale of your electronic mail listing, they usually include many built-in instruments that’ll assist you to get your campaigns off the bottom in moments.

Free Email Templates in GetResponse.
Examples of free electronic mail templates in GetResponse

Additionally, the variety of emails you ship doesn’t influence the associated fee. This manner, you possibly can give attention to constructing your listing with people who find themselves prone to change into common donors and run a number of campaigns to attain that purpose.

For those who’re in search of a trusted answer, we advise you take a look at GetResponse. As a non-profit, you might be eligible for a 50% discount on electronic mail advertising companies.

For those who’d reasonably store round, right here’s a useful listing of the very best e-newsletter software program, together with info on the options they provide.

4. E mail supplies a excessive return on funding

In response to a latest research by DMA, the common electronic mail ROI is 38:1. Because of this for each greenback you make investments in electronic mail advertising, you possibly can count on 38 {dollars} in return. And in case you commonly run A/B checks in your emails, you possibly can generate an much more spectacular return in your funding. 

Which means you gained’t have to fret in regards to the worth of electronic mail advertising software program. As a substitute, you’ll have the ability to calculate the return on funding from the instruments included in your plan, e.g., webinars, touchdown pages, and automatic emails.

5. Measurable outcomes

E mail advertising is a extremely measurable advertising channel.

Of their analytics dashboards, electronic mail advertising platforms present nonprofits with key knowledge about their campaigns’ efficiency. This consists of metrics akin to opens, clicks, conversion charges, and gross sales income.

GetResponse Email Analytics dashboard main view.
GetResponse electronic mail analytics dashboard.

Outfitted with this knowledge, nonprofits can refine their messaging, determine key viewers segments, and optimize their campaigns for higher outcomes.

Most vital electronic mail advertising instruments for non-profits

The important thing electronic mail advertising instruments that assist nonprofits plan and implement their electronic mail advertising technique are:

E mail advertising platform

Skilled electronic mail e-newsletter software program instruments empower your advertising group to construct relationships with supporters and develop your donor base. Entrepreneurs can create great-looking emails with an intuitive drag-and-drop editor and even AI-generative instruments.

AI subject line generator from GetResponse
AI topic line generator from GetResponse

Accumulate beneficial details about subscribers and create contact segments utilizing tags and customized fields. For instance, by dividing the contact listing into separate electronic mail segments like subscribers, supporters, one-off donors, and common donors, you possibly can flip your electronic mail advertising instrument right into a donor administration platform.

E mail advertising platforms additionally present a excessive supply fee and guarantee that your campaigns keep away from the spam folder.

Varieties and popups

A subscription type is a type positioned on a web site or weblog the place the customers can fill within the fields with their knowledge to obtain emails on matters associated to your nonprofit. The first purpose of the subscription type is opting-in supporters to your mailing listing.

You’ll be able to both use an embedded signup type – a type that’s a part of your web site’s format – or a popup – a small window that seems on high of your web page.

Popup form templates available in GetResponse.
Popup type templates obtainable in GetResponse.

Touchdown pages

A touchdown web page is an easy web site with a transparent name to motion. You should use drag and drop editor to create efficient fundraising touchdown pages. Give individuals a cause to donate by demonstrating the influence of their contributions.

You too can use touchdown pages to share tales of actual individuals impacted by your initiatives with completely different audiences. Add subscription kinds to those pages and develop your potential donor base. All the time current the advantages of signing up on your e-newsletter, e.g., that you simply’ll inform donors how their cash is spent and what influence it has on the trigger.


Webinars are undoubtedly among the many only electronic mail advertising instruments. You should use webinars to get new electronic mail subscribers by discussing fascinating matters or donors by working stay fundraising occasions. Webinars needs to be part of your electronic mail technique: as soon as potential donors register on your webinar, you possibly can ship them electronic mail sequences earlier than and after the occasion.

A useful characteristic it is best to take into account are on-demand webinars. You’ll be able to document stay occasions and switch them into pre-recorded occasions individuals can watch at their comfort.

Community Events and Webinars - screenshot of a landing page.
A web page devoted to group occasions and webinars on the TechSoup World web site

Paid Advertisements

Fb Advertisements and Google Advertisements can drastically help electronic mail advertising for nonprofits. You’ll be able to allocate price range to get in entrance of latest audiences, construct your electronic mail listing, and discover new donors. Additionally, in case you join your Fb Pixel with electronic mail advertising software program, you possibly can run retargeting adverts to convey subscribers again to your web page.

Web site Builder

Having a devoted web site on your nonprofit group can actually set issues in movement. An internet site supplies a real base of operations for your entire on-line endeavors. For those who’re in search of a nonprofit web site builder, strive GetResponse’s Web site Builder. It’s completely free to get began, and we offer a 50% low cost on paid plans for organizations that require extra capabilities.

Easy methods to begin with electronic mail advertising in a non-profit?

Nice electronic mail outcomes begin with nice planning. Write down your objectives and develop a nonprofit electronic mail advertising technique that may use emails to ship the proper info to the proper individuals on the proper time. And what’s much more vital, guarantee your viewers is aware of what to do with the knowledge they obtain.

Observe these steps to arrange your nonprofit electronic mail advertising technique for fulfillment.

Step 1. Construct your electronic mail listing

Inform your goal viewers about the advantages of joining your email list. Once more, give attention to motion: will they have the ability to evaluation the outcomes of accomplished initiatives, share their opinion on key matters, donate cash, or help your trigger differently? Be sure that individuals know why they ought to subscribe.

Step 2. Get to know your viewers

E mail just isn’t solely about offering your contacts with info. For fairly a while now, it means that you can get to know the individuals in your listing. You’ll be able to design two-way communication and ask your contacts for his or her info wants and preferences. When what your viewers is about, you possibly can create content material they’ll interact with.   

Step 3. Construct consciousness about your trigger

Share your mission, objectives, and initiatives with the goal viewers. Be sure that all people is aware of what your group is about and be part of the trigger.

Step 4. Hold your viewers knowledgeable

lead by instance. For those who name for motion, present that you’re all about motion your self. Share mission statuses and supply a abstract with key info as soon as they’re accomplished. Being clear about your initiatives supplies context for nice content material concepts and helps your group acquire credibility.  

Step 5. Accumulate donations 

invite contacts to help your non-profit financially. You’ll be able to A/B take a look at campaigns for one-off and recurring donations and shortly uncover the simplest messaging and incentives.

Step 6. Phase your viewers

acquire details about your contacts and group them based mostly on their pursuits (e.g., favourite initiatives, occasions, content material), electronic mail engagement, and their place within the funnel (contact, one-time donor, common donor, and many others.)

Proper contact list segmentation has a huge effect on all efficiency metrics of your electronic mail advertising. Emails tailor-made to particular person contact segments have a number of instances increased open and click-through charges in comparison with email blasts send to everyone on the list

Step 7. Be sure that your content material’s high degree

Guarantee your content material bridges the hole between your organizational objectives and your viewers’s info wants. Work out what info individuals have to help your group actively. Create tips on your content material so as to keep high quality over time. 

Step 8. Keep compliant

GDPR (Basic Knowledge Safety Regulation) is Europe’s present privateness regulation. Adopted in April 2016, it replaces the 1995 Knowledge Safety Directive – and marks the largest change in knowledge safety in 20 years. 

It is advisable adjust to the GDPR when: 

  • your group relies within the European Union (EU), 
  • you course of the private knowledge of people within the EU. 

If you employ GetResponse, your group can relaxation straightforward understanding that your – and your contact’s – knowledge is protected, safe, and actively protected. 

For extra info concerning GDPR compliance, learn the GetResponse Earns Official Declaration of GDPR Compliance weblog.

E mail advertising finest practices for non-profits

Beneath you’ll discover tried and examined methods to make use of emails and electronic mail sequence to show contacts (your electronic mail readers) into common donors. These concepts will assist you to kick off an important facets of electronic mail advertising. When you begin, you possibly can benchmark electronic mail outcomes towards your earlier expertise and enhance with each the instruments and messages.

1. Create e-newsletter templates 

A well-designed e-newsletter template is extraordinarily vital for electronic mail advertising success, and right here’s a case research with TechSoup Polska that proves it: 1200% enhance of orders worth from a e-newsletter over a 12 months.  

There are lots of facets to take into consideration when designing electronic mail templates. If you’re serious about designing your first electronic mail, it’s a good suggestion to make use of one of many pre-designed templates and customise it to your wants. 

Screenshot of predesigned email templates in GetResponse.
Predesigned electronic mail templates in GetResponse.

Check out the principles that TechSoup Polska follows whereas creating their newsletters: 

Construction. We divide our content material into sections to facilitate info comprehension. 

Consistency. We at all times use model colours and make the most of comparable graphic parts. 

Readability. We attempt to maintain our newsletters clear and never overloaded with content material. 

Adjusting messages to the goal group. We direct particular content material to chose recipient teams (e.g. we inform customers of Google for Nonprofits about Google Advert Grants coaching). 

Image of newsletter templates used by TechSoup Polska.
Publication templates used by TechSoup Polska

Listed below are just a few items of recommendation from Liza Nema, Undertaking Coordinator at TechSoup Polska, on  put together knowledgeable e-newsletter template:

  • Take into consideration what sort of content material you’ll be sending to your recipients. 
  • Select a template. 
  • Customise the template based on your wants – use electronic mail editor to vary the colours to be according to your model, add logos and different graphic parts. 
  • Add a call-to-action in order that your recipients can carry out the specified motion: donate cash, join an occasion, and many others. 
  • Earlier than you ship your e-newsletter, verify its preview for desktop and cellular units. Be sure that your campaigns each look and work nice.
  • Analyze statistics and modify your content material based mostly on that knowledge. Verify your best-performing campaigns and select a benchmark electronic mail for additional campaigns.
  • Don’t be afraid to experiment. It’s good to refresh your templates now and again and keep in mind to take care of your elementary model graphic parts.

For those who’re in search of in-depth info on design nice electronic mail advertising templates, you’ll benefit from the E mail Design Greatest Practices for 2022 article, the place Michael covers all the weather of an electronic mail intimately.

2. Automate electronic mail advertising communication

As soon as your e-newsletter template is prepared, you can begin automating your communication. You’ll be able to use circumstances, filters, and actions to construct automation workflows – automated communication flows. 

The purpose is to make use of automation to construct relationships with the individuals in your contact listing and assist them make the proper selections. You’ll be able to talk along with your viewers with nice precision utilizing knowledge saved in your account. You’ll be able to:  

  • Create automation occasions based mostly on customers’ conduct 
  • Take motion based mostly on chosen circumstances 
  • Use filters for much more exact focusing on 
  • and many others. 
An example of an automation template that allows splitting contacts after signup.
Automation template permitting you to separate contacts after signup to check which electronic mail performs finest.

Automation means that you can ship customized advertising experiences. You’ll be able to observe and fee prospects’ actions to create customized segments based mostly on particular knowledge and standards. This manner, you possibly can ship customized and related emails to your viewers.

When you automate your communication, you possibly can observe efficiency, study out of your expertise and optimize the method. And most significantly, you save time and assets for different initiatives.

Right here’s an amazing case research exhibiting how an ecommerce promoting artisanal espresso makes use of automation to teach new contacts: 54% of gross sales due to the tutorial marketing campaign. 

Examples of emails in LandCafe's automation workflow.
Emails in LandCafe’s automation workflow

The marketing campaign was carried out based on the Study -> Like -> Belief -> Purchase circulation. As a non-profit, you possibly can simply adapt this system and convert it to Study -> Like -> Belief -> Donate.

3. Observe the outcomes of your electronic mail advertising campaigns

There are a number of elements that contribute to efficient electronic mail advertising communication. Take note of your on-line advertising statistics and use knowledge to make higher selections. 

Relating to particular person emails, take note of engagement – a measure of how individuals work together along with your emails. The hottest engagement metrics are:

  • Open Charge: the share of contacts who open a particular electronic mail out of your whole variety of subscribers. 
  • Click on-through fee: the share of contacts who clicked on a hyperlink, CTA, or picture inside a selected electronic mail. 
  • Conversion fee: the share of contacts who full a purpose expressed by the decision to motion. 
  • Unsubscribe fee: the share of contacts who’ve opted out from the mailing listing after an electronic mail marketing campaign.

Engagement is additionally crucial to deliverability – the power to ship emails to subscribers’ inboxes. That’s another excuse to consistently seek for the very best doable content material on your viewers. And knowledge will help you with that.

For those who’d like to match your outcomes towards trade benchmarks, right here’s the E mail Advertising Benchmarks report providing a great deal of helpful insights into emails, advertising automation, touchdown pages, and webinars.

4. Discover bottlenecks and enhance electronic mail advertising efficiency

It’s not doable to create a excellent electronic mail advertising program or marketing campaign. There’s at all times room for enchancment. That’s why in your profession, you’ll see some nice, common, and reasonably poor outcomes. And it’s completely OK so long as you continue learning from your expertise and carry on testing new concepts.

The commonest points you observe originally are:

Gradual electronic mail listing progress. Constructing a listing organically with the audience takes time. But it surely doesn’t imply that it is best to sit and wait. Really, there’s a lot you are able to do to pace up the list-building course of. You’ll be able to: 

  • add a pop-up type to your web site: pop-up kinds are laborious to overlook, and in case you clarify why becoming a member of your electronic mail listing is a good suggestion, you possibly can count on a excessive conversion fee. 
  • run a contest: competitors might be each a sign-up incentive and an thought to have interaction along with your viewers. 
  • write a weblog put up: write about your group, highlighting certainly one of your key initiatives. Add a sign-up type or a hyperlink to your sign-up web page. 
  • add an opt-in hyperlink to your electronic mail signature: I’m positive you ship numerous emails each month. Be sure that your recipients know they will sign-up for a e-newsletter.  
  • discover partnerships: discover individuals and organizations with an analogous audience and supply them visitor posts and joint electronic mail campaigns. A robust community of partnerships is extremely beneficial. 
  • run a webinar: webinars are an effective way to construct a strong contact listing. Do the analysis and select a subject that’s fascinating on your audience. Run promotional campaigns and invite individuals to register. Webinars are additionally excellent for content material partnerships. Crew up with different organizations to get in entrance of their viewers.

Learn extra to learn to construct an electronic mail listing from scratch and create a popup in moments.

The next three KPIs may relate to contact engagement. The important thing to a excessive engagement fee is relevance. That’s why segmentation is so vital. For those who group contacts based mostly on their info wants and preferences, you’ll have the ability to plan and ship communication they may interact with.

Low open fee. Persons are prone to open emails with the knowledge they discover beneficial. Guarantee that the three parts seen within the inbox earlier than opening an electronic mail symbolize the contents of the message. The three parts are: 

  • sender: be certain individuals know that the e-mail comes from a good sender – you 
  • topic line: spark curiosity, draw consideration however check with the contents of the e-mail 
  • preheader: use this further house to clarify or increase on the topic line

Low click-through fee. Be sure that your emails are mobile-friendly. Your name to motion needs to be clear and simple to comply with. You’ll be able to run A/B checks to search out out what content material and messaging engages your viewers most.

Low conversion fee. While you see that folks open your emails and click on the supplied hyperlinks however don’t do the motion you had been hoping for (e.g. don’t register for stay occasions, don’t donate) it is best to take a step again and look rigorously at your worth proposition and viewers.

First, clearly clarify the objectives of your group and the methods you’re going to attain them. Then put your message in entrance of the proper crowd – search for people who find themselves prone to help your trigger. Ship the proper message to the proper individuals and simplify the donation course of – in order that it’s fast and simple.

Observe: You’ll additionally wish to guarantee your electronic mail listing is hygienic and nicely maintained. To study extra about this, learn our electronic mail listing administration information.

Inspiring examples of nonprofit emails

There’s no higher supply of inspiration than an amazing electronic mail out of your trade. And boy, are there many nice emails despatched by non-profit organizations! As soon as once more, we teamed up with Liza to point out you just a few inspiring examples from our inboxes:

Nonprofit electronic mail advertising instance 1: Kiva

An email from Kiva.
An electronic mail with a short abstract of 2020 and inviting supporters to begin 2021 robust 

What is that this electronic mail marketing campaign about?

Kiva is a nonprofit group that allows you to simply mortgage cash to individuals that can’t get a mortgage from a financial institution.

This marketing campaign supplies a abstract of their campaigns in 2020, highlighting how many individuals supported them, how a lot cash they’ve donated, and what number of loans they’ve made.

What’s so go about this electronic mail marketing campaign?

After getting the recipients enthusiastic about how a lot influence they’re making, the e-mail leads you to a single CTA, letting you lend cash instantly.

It is a nice tactic that may assist nonprofit organizations interact their viewers higher and collect extra donations from their supporters.

Nonprofit electronic mail advertising instance 2: Kiva

A fundraising email.
An electronic mail that includes the loans nearing the tip of their fundraising interval

What is that this electronic mail marketing campaign about?

This electronic mail marketing campaign tells the story of certainly one of many individuals whose life modified after they acquired a mortgage from Kiva.

What’s so go about this electronic mail marketing campaign?

Generally it’s laborious to get your donors engaged in your trigger. What will help is sharing a relatable story that exhibits the true influence a single donation could make.

On this electronic mail marketing campaign, Kiva not solely exhibits an instance of an individual whose life modified after they acquired a mortgage but in addition suggests which loans are about to run out.

It is a nice tactic that may drive quick responses from individuals who might in any other case hesitate to take motion.

Nonprofit electronic mail advertising instance 3: Movember

Movember email raising awareness.
An electronic mail sharing the mission and progress the Movember basis made to date earlier than the World Most cancers Day

What is that this electronic mail marketing campaign about?

Movember is the main charity altering the face of males’s well being globally, specializing in psychological well being and suicide prevention, prostate most cancers, and testicular most cancers.

This electronic mail marketing campaign shares the mission and progresses the Movember basis made to date earlier than World Most cancers Day.

What’s so go about this electronic mail marketing campaign?

With this electronic mail, Movember manages to drive consciousness amongst individuals who won’t in any other case know the model’s mission. What’s value noting is that they’re doing this round World Most cancers Day, which takes place in February, reasonably than November that’s usually related to the charity.

Nonprofit electronic mail advertising instance 4: Movember

An email with research and health projects funded by donors.
An electronic mail exhibiting groundbreaking analysis and well being initiatives funded by donors

What is that this electronic mail marketing campaign about?

This electronic mail exhibits a abstract of all of the groundbreaking analysis and well being initiatives that had been funded by individuals supporting the Movember trigger.

What’s so go about this electronic mail marketing campaign?

There’s no higher option to get your supporters and donors engaged than to point out them they’re making an actual influence by becoming a member of your trigger. This electronic mail does it nicely. Not solely is informative but in addition very well-designed. As well as, the e-mail ends with one main CTA – make a $50 donation – that’s laborious to overlook or ignore.

Again to you

In conclusion, electronic mail advertising is usually a highly effective instrument for nonprofit organizations to succeed in their audience, promote their mission, and drive donations. By following the very best practices outlined on this article, you possibly can create efficient electronic mail campaigns that resonate along with your subscribers and obtain your group’s objectives.

Keep in mind to maintain your emails customized, partaking, and visually interesting, and don’t neglect to trace your metrics to optimize your campaigns regularly.

Lastly, remember the fact that constructing a powerful electronic mail listing takes effort and time, so be affected person and protracted in your efforts. With the proper technique and instruments, electronic mail advertising is usually a beneficial asset on your nonprofit group and assist you to make a significant influence on the world.

Professional tip 💡 Are you prepared to begin your individual campaigns? Be sure you take a look at the low cost for electronic mail advertising companies for nonprofit organizations, and see you in our inboxes!

This text was final up to date in March 2023.