Six ways automating email marketing changes everything

Third Sector Promotion Engaging Networks

How can charities use the power of email marketing automation to build deeper relationships with supporters and, ultimately, raise more money? Joanne Warner from Engaging Networks has some advice…

First things first: just what is email marketing automation? Have you ever booked a flight and then got an email asking if you want to upgrade or book a seat or add hold luggage? That’s going to be email marketing automation.

Have you ever got halfway through an online check out process and stopped only to receive an email from the same company a few hours later asking if there’s something they can help you with? That’s going to be email marketing automation.

Have you ever received an email from your favourite restaurant a week before your birthday offering a free drink to celebrate? That’s going to be email marketing automation. 

These are all activities personalised to you and designed to give you a great experience. That’s email marketing automation.

Why do we need email marketing automation?

Automated emails have a 70.5% higher open rate and a 152% higher click-through rate than standard messages. (Epsilon) 44% of donors told Accenture in 2017 that they would be willing to donate up to 10% more for a personalised experience. It’s no understatement to say it’s tough times for fundraisers. But technology like this is here to help.

With the right email technology, here are six things you can do… 

1 Plan your campaigns Imagine knowing how many people you have in each list, having email templates set up, the ability to preview your email, run tests and schedule emails to go at a specific time or for a specific reason. And, more importantly, imagine having this planned in advance so it runs seamlessly. Your job becomes about ongoing optimisation and not slow and manual processes.

2 Segment your list On criteria such as user data, question responses, advocacy actions or submitted fundraising pages. People support causes in different ways. We need a way to prioritise their needs. The right technology puts the tools directly in your hands.

3 Trigger email series It’s your supporters birthday, or they’ve just given for the first time, or their credit card is about to expire. Imagine having the ability to get in touch with your supporters at the right time without needing to take any action.

4 Convert leads to donors To raise more money your database needs to grow continuously and you need to have plans how to convert those people to financial support. Automation helps define journeys and workflows for big sets of data.

5 Engage with your supporters in a relevant way It’s all about collecting the right data from your supporters in the right way. Do you know why they joined your list? What are they interested in hearing about from you? Can you ask them to take further actions or complete surveys to help you gain insight and understanding? Your technology should help you get a better understanding of your supporters and their needs.  

6 Analyse and optimise your journeys You need to know what’s working and what’s not. You’ll want to split test your content, test your subject lines, change your priorities. You may want to amend content for seasonal activities. Constantly review: power up when something’s working, dial down when it’s not. The right technology gives you the insight you need. 

Joanne Warner is director of international business development at Engaging Networks 

Free email marketing automation resources 

Sign up today for Engaging Networks 12-week programme on email marketing automation. It’s packed with worksheets, templates, checklists and tips designed to help you deepen relationships with supporters and ultimately raise more money.

You will receive:

  • Goal setting worksheet
  • Email planning template
  • Persona worksheet
  • Blog: Email preference centres for more effective email marketing
  • Segmentation generator
  • Blog: 10 tips to help you get personal with donors
  • Blog: 10 tips for writing awesome fundraising email
  • Blog: Five essential marketing automations for non-profits.

Sign up today here


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