Three Tips to Make the Most of Your Nonprofit's Email Marketing

Posted on February 24, 2011

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Hubspot’s Dan Zarrella doesn’t spew “unicorn and rainbow” advice. In his webinar, The Science of E-mail Marketing, he used raw data to compile a comprehensive list of best practices for e-mail marketers. His counterintuitive findings are relevant to e-mail communication with your donors. Below are the three top takeaways from his presentation:


What day of the week should you send your e-mail blast? The best days may seem to be Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. But based on a study of nearly 10 billion of MailChimp’s records, e-mails read on Saturday or Sunday have the highest click-through rates. And what’s even more surprising, Tuesday has the highest unsubscribe rate. So why not try sending your next newsletter early (between 6 a.m. and 7 a.m.) on a Saturday?

Links, Links and More Links

The best way to boost your click-through rates is to include lots of links. There is a correlation between the number of links in an e-mail and the click-through rate. This tip becomes particularly important is when you want to push your donors to one specific page. Don’t make the mistake of including the link once, thinking that you are focusing your readers’ attention. Instead, use that one link throughout the email with language that will resonate with your readers in different ways.


If you’re already e-mailing your database once a month, you can send your readers more messages without risking an increase to your unsubscribe rate. In fact, increased frequency is correlated to lower unsubscribe rates, so don’t be afraid to increase the frequency with which you e-mail your donors. However, there is a catch. Be sure that you are providing useful, relevant and interesting content in your blasts.


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