Emails in the form of general updates or newsletters can be a huge asset and an important way to develop a connection between your association and your members (or potential members). To foster a solid line of communication and feedback, keep the following tips in mind when creating effective emails.
[Related: Tips for a Great Association Newsletter]
Be Personable & Friendly
You want your members to feel like more than a number. Showing appreciation and thoughtfulness as an association is important, even through the screen.
Start your emails with a friendly greeting that includes the member’s first name. By speaking casually and personably, rather than formally or obviously from a professional template, you’ll find that members are more likely to enjoy reading your emails and continue to open them in the future.
[Related: Six Virtual Tools for Nonprofits]
Creating effective emails start with a solid email list. Member email lists are a fantastic source of data. Use monthly or bimonthly emails to seek out opinions from your members via surveys or questionnaires that allow them to provide feedback.
This will help keep a strong line of communication between your association and your members, finding out what they want to see more of and allowing you to further personalize future emails.
[Related: How to Ensure High Membership Renewal Rates]
Use a Subject Line That Will Encourage Opening
The subject line of an email might not seem like the most essential thing to focus on, but 33% of individuals make the decision to open an email based off of the subject line alone. In a sea of spam offers, chain mail, retail coupons, and other junk, you want your association’s message to stand out.
Keep your subject line under 50 characters, consider using your member’s first name, and avoid spam words that might accidentally deliver your email to the junk mail folder.
Be Direct & Get to the Point
Although sending dozens of emails for every small update is unnecessary, you’ll want to avoid combining too many topics into one email, unless it is your scheduled monthly or quarterly newsletter. Optimum email messages are around 100 words and are to the point.
Think of the goal or purpose of the email and stick with it. Make sure to end your email with a call to action, such as “sign up for this event,” “donate to our fundraiser,” or “give us feedback.”
[Related: How to Collect Helpful Member Feedback]
Include Easy-to-Follow Links
An email should be easy to navigate, especially if the content is requesting further information or action. For fundraising emails, include links directly to your association’s online crowdfunding or donation page, as well as simple and obvious links to your homepage and contact page.