Email used to be the number one way to connect with potential partners, clients, and donors. However, email has gotten really noisy over time, with one study from 2015 showing that most office workers receiving up to 121 emails per day(!). So how do you cut through this onslaught and improve your odds of getting your message read by your recipient?
When engaging with your readers, make the interaction as personal as possible. If you are using a bulk email platform or CRM (which you really should be), you should leverage merge tags to auto-fill first names and salutations to make your communication with donors more personal. If you are sending out individual emails, be sure to take the extra time to personalize those for each recipient as well.
Instead of “Dear Friend/Donor/Supporter,” start your emails with “Hey John” or “Dear Katie.” Personalized emails can generate conversion rates (clicks, replies, purchases, or donations) up to six times more than a generalized email.
Another way to personalize your emails is to offer content relevant to your supporters individual interests.
A super easy way to do this, that doesn’t add to a busy nonprofit marketing manager’s work load, is personalized subscription sign-ups. When users go to your website and sign up for your email list, give them the option to choose what kind of emails they want to receive. If your organization hosts events, has multiple campaigns, provides field work updates, or presents other types of content, list those options on your sign up form. Subscribers can then receive extremely personalized content without being overloaded with too many emails and can manage their preferences as their interests and engagements change.
We also subscribe to the idea of conscious marketing whereby relationship-building is the primary desired outcome of one’s marketing efforts rather than seeing every engagement as an opportunity to sell. Take time to deliver value to your audience and the longer-term benefits will be realized.
As you build trust and a “personal” connection, your audience will grow and stick with you for the long haul. And remember to call each of your new friends by their name through effective personalization.
Want to learn more about making connections with your audience? Give us a shout.