- Wed, August 15 2012
- Filed under: Marketing essentials
When someone signs up to receive emails from you, what’s the first thing you send? Do you just add them to your e-newsletter distribution? Or do you actually welcome them?
Don’t neglect the most important emails - the first ones you send!
My colleagues Allison Schwalm and Caryn Stein have created a nifty mini-guide (free with registration) that provides all the details on how to do this right. Read the whole guide here, and remember their advice:
A welcome series is a sequence of 2-3 simple, personal email messages (a plus if you’re able to automate them!) that a constituent receives over the course of their first few weeks on your email list, educating them about your organization, its programs, and ways to get involved and stay connected. Executed thoughtfully, a welcome series can help you give new constituent relationships the personal attention they need (before asking for donations to your organization) without a huge resource commitment.
A personal greeting from the voice of your organization: This could be your organization’s Executive Director, a staff member that works in your development department or a celebrity spokesperson. (Quick tip: Tread lightly with your spokesperson. Constituents want to talk to someone that relates to them on an ongoing basis not just a talking head.) This email will highlight the state of your organization and will educate the new constituents about what your organization does and the people or community that you serve. Focus on educating your new constituents and reminding them what they signed up for. Reinforce benefits and set expectations about what your constituents will receive and how often.
Highlight specific ways your constituents can get involved: Have really great programs geared toward families? Looking for volunteers for your homeless ministry? Planning a gala dinner and recruiting committee members? In your second welcome message, place emphasis on educating newcomers on ways to get involved or highlighting the value of being a supporter. Mentioning upcoming events will also give new constituents a chance to meet your staff in person and will likely increase their level of involvement with your organization.
Provide other ways to engage with your organization: Tell them about the ways they can connect with your staff through Facebook or Twitter (Want to learn more about engaging donors with these tools? Check out the also free guide: Woo and Wow Your Donors with Social Media). Do you post great videos that are super sharable? Include a link to Your YouTube channel.