How to Create a Fundraising Email that Gets Opened and Drives Donations

First, some excellent news: Average e-mail open rates for nonprofits in 2020 are much better than the rates for a few of today’’ s most competitive markets like realty, tourist, legal services, and nutrition.

Now the problem: The typical open rate is simply over 20%. While there are lots of factors for this, it suggests that a few of the e-mails you send out on behalf of your charity go directly into the virtual trash can. Even if you’’ re above average for open rates, you can still enhance and get more individuals to discover.

Email is a crucial component of any digital marketing method, specifically for not-for-profit executives. Because almost everybody checks their e-mail a minimum of when a day, marketing e-mails offer direct interaction with volunteers, donors, board members, and service receivers. The secret is to be efficient in your messaging.

 Graphic of statistics for fundraising e-mail

Online contributions have actually never ever been more vital for nonprofits of all sizes, and e-mail is among the very best methods to link to future and existing donors.

How can an advancement director at a not-for-profit produce an efficient fundraising e-mail? Incorporate these finest practices into your next e-mail outreach project.

.Study your contacts.

One factor that nonprofits have a greater than typical e-mail open rate than other organizations is that individuals who register for your e-mails appreciate your cause and wish to assist. They pick to sign up for your e-mail list. Are you providing them genuine chances to make a distinction? You won’’ t understand unless you ask.

Start by connecting to your present e-mail contacts with a study to learn what they’’d like to see in your e-newsletter. You might be shocked at a few of the concepts. Be open to originalities relating to virtual occasions or methods of showing your effect that might be various than how you’’ ve formerly interacted.

Emails put on’’ t constantly need to be fundraising demands, and in reality, they shouldn’’ t. You can develop more powerful relationships– causing larger contributions down the roadway —– if you concentrate on establishing relationships rather. Differ your messaging to keep your advocates interested enough to open what you’’ re sending out.

.Get mobile-responsive.

If you’’ re utilizing an out-of-date e-mail marketing tool, it’’ s possible that individuals’aren ’ t opening your e-mails merely due to the fact that the style makes it difficult for them to read it on their mobile phone. Some companies attempt to conserve cash by utilizing old e-mail design templates, however hard-to-decipher designs can cost you cash in the long run.

Constant Contact’’ s e-mail marketing tools not just supply a tidy, mobile-responsive design, however they likewise permit you to pick from a range of industry-themed design templates so you can look expert. A fundraising e-mail design template can assist you finish the job rapidly and successfully.

.Fine-tune subject lines.

Let’’ s state you wish to send out an e-mail to welcome advocates to a fundraising occasion. You ’ ve chosen an invite e-mail design template that predicts the very same design and style of the occasion. Now, how do you begin? Follow these suggestions for composing your subject line :

. Don ’ t get too thrilled. Limitation using exclamation points and prevent over-promising. Stay succinct.The’objective is to see the whole subject line even when area is restricted. Usage numbers. Numbers make individuals believe you have a metric worth sharing. Be clear. It ’ s appealing to be smart, however make certain the subject truthfully describes the e-mail. Prevent spam sets off with words and expressions like “ 100%, ” “ as seen on, ” “ remarkable, ” and “ totally free.” “” “. Ask concerns based upon “what your audience might would like to know. Take care with humor. It ’ s simple for individuals to miss out on the joke– and unsubscribe. Don ’ t usage emojis. We understand, frowny face– however viewedinformality or cultural distinctions might anger some readers. Segment your audience.

A efficient and popular pattern in marketing is referred to ascustomization, and this surpasses beginning your e-mail with a “ Dear [Call Last Name] ” Personalization can start by “separating who gets your e-mail based upon whether they ’ re a donor, a recipient of services, a volunteer, or merely somebody who went to a current’occasion.

. When the information you keep and gather in your e-mail marketing platform can come in helpful, #ppppp> This is.Do you understand the birthdays of your volunteers? You can send an unique birthday welcoming for those commemorating monthly to let them understand you care. When signing up for the e-mail list in the very first location, make this a concern they can address.


If somebody is a leading donor, they need to be resolved in a various method than somebody who ’ s never ever economically supported your company. Separating your e-mail lists in sectors lets you customize your message in such a way that will naturally motivate individuals to check out and open.

. Evaluate your subject lines utilizing A/B screening.

When you ’ re crafting e-mail topic lines for fundraising, it can feel a lot like unlimited stabs in the dark.How do you’understand when your writing will get more contributions to support your objective? The response depends on A/B screening .


A/B screening is easy, yet extremely efficient. Start by developing 2 different e-mail topic lines with a various focus, tone, or design. See which one carries out much better by examining the back-end metrics. You ’ ll understand how to craft the follow-up subject line for much better outcomes.

. Consist of engaging images.

A/B screening can likewise be utilized for the images in your e-mails– and you utilize plenty of engaging images,? Placing pictures that inject feeling into your e-mail designs( never ever connect images that require to be downloaded )can motivate individuals to keep reading and contribute based upon the feelings those pictures activate.


 example of fundraising e-mail that consists of an engaging image

. When selecting out images for your e-mails, #ppppp> Keep your audience in mind.


Be sure any images you consist of are high quality and hugeenough to see, however not so big regarding pack gradually.

. Have a strong call to action.

Finally, individuals who open your e-mails might not be contributing just since you never ever provided the chance to do so. They mighthave actually enjoyed what you ’ ve composed and the images you ’ ve chosen, however you shouldn ’ t presume that they ’ ll get the phone and call you to contribute– you’need to make it simple for them.


The response is a clear call-to-action button, which can’be a one-click approach for contributing. The button can check out — “ Donate Now, ” or if you desire them to buy a ticket to an occasion, “ I ’ ll Be There. ” Always consider what you desire your readers to do when crafting a fundraising e-mail, and after that provide a clear course for them to take that action.’

.” Incorporate e-mail with an extensive marketing technique.

Of course, you can ’ t depend on e-mail marketing as the only tool to get in touch with individuals who appreciate your objective. It requires to be part of a thorough marketing technique that consists of a mobile-responsive site, social networks outreach, and more.


For concepts on an extensive tactical plan to establish relationships with your advocates and make more contributions, take a look at Constant Contact ’ s The Download . This complimentary guide is particularly produced to assist nonprofits cut through the sound to link in a significant method with those who care.