In this era of stretched budgets and lack of resources, it can be difficult for businesses to effectively stay in touch with their constituents. Those in the nonprofit arena arguably have a greater burden since they dealt with these challenges before the economic downturn.
Many nonprofits find e-mail marketing is a cost-effective, timely way to reach donors, volunteers and sister agencies.
One example is The Conservators’ Center, an exotic animal rescue organization. This nonprofit uses a monthly e-mail newsletter to publicize everything from fundraising events to special facility tours. In the past year, The Conservators’ Center has developed 1500 followers through the use of e-mail.
With a small staff, e-mail marketing makes sense for The Conservators’ Center. Using templates available in the iContact application, its monthly newsletter gives them a professional look and feel, without costing them significant resources.
In iContact’s experience, nonprofits enjoy a higher open rate than the average for-profit business due to the recipients’ increased level of trust with the organization. The Conservators’ Center has seen open rates between 24 and 28 percent for their e-mail marketing messages.
Combining open rates with a strong social media presence allows the Conservators’ Center to differentiate from other nonprofits competing for donors and volunteers. Arthur, its Siberian Tiger, has a Twitter account and Facebook profile.
For nonprofits, the benefits of e-mail marketing are threefold: cost-efficient communication; the ability to attract and retain constituents; and the delivery of timely information in a professional manner.
The cost of entry — in both application knowledge and staff time — is relatively low, making e-mail marketing the best communication channel for nonprofits that rely on reaching their donor and volunteer base to be successful.