Email is the biggest missed opportunity for charities. If all you do is send out a monthly email newsletter, you’re missing a trick.
Your email subscribers are so engaged that they gave you their personal details. They deserve the chance to be a real part of your cause.
So just how valuable are those email addresses, and how can you make the most of them?
The value of an email address to fundraisers
Email remains one of the strongest channels for online fundraising. The 2016 M&R benchmarks report found that email fundraising revenue grew by 15% last year, accounting for 26% of all online revenue.
What percentage of your online income came from email last year?
Email is a super cheap fundraising tool with excellent ROI. For every 1,000 emails sent in 2016, charities raised on average $36. Here In the UK, the DMA reported that email marketing generated £38 for every £1 spent in 2015.
And supporters still want to sign up to email lists – list growth continues to outweigh churn.
With amazing ROI, great fundraising results, and continued enthusiasm from supporters, there’s no doubting that a supporter’s email address has huge value to a charity.
So how can you make better use of those prized email addresses?
1. Segment your audience to increase ROI
Every supporter is different, so why would you treat them the same?
Split out your most engaged email subscribers (those who open and click the most) and send them a tailored message. A subscriber who regularly clicks your emails is much more likely to respond positively to a donation ask than someone who only opens them.
2. Send online appeals
You’re regularly sending postal appeals, but you should also send them electronically.
It is so much cheaper to email and there are no fulfillment costs or delays to worry about.
So next time you do an offline appeal, duplicate it online. You might find that some of your supporters prefer to donate online, getting you even better results! You should also consider sending email-only appeals more regularly.
3. Separate your event recruitment
Do you recruit for challenge events in your regular newsletters instead of via dedicated challenge event emails?
If so, you could be losing out. Attention online is scarce, and your calls to action might get buried under your news stories.
So create focused email programmes for each of your top challenge events to increase sign-ups.
With just one call to action per email, your recipients will know exactly what to do, and won’t be distracted by the noise of other events or stories you’re trying to sell to them.
Email addresses can be powerful assets to have, so don’t waste them! Use them to add value and build relationships with your supporters. Your fundraising is bound to benefit.