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The 5 most important reasons why you need to send more email

Nonprofit Email Marketing

I know.

It can be nerve-wracking.

I hear it all the time.

“But if we email more often, won’t we drive people to unsubscribe?”

Actually, no.

It’s not quantity so much as it is lack of quality and relevance that drives people to unsubscribe.

And in fact, there are lots of advantages to emailing your list more often.

But, it requires a different approach than you’re probably used to.

Sometimes our first reaction to a new idea is to reject it outright simply because it’s difficult for us to see why it would work better.

So, today, I want to share some of the biggest advantages of emailing your list more often.

I believe that once you start to see how sending more email will benefit your organization you’ll want to give it a shot.

Below are the five most important reasons why you can’t afford NOT to email more often, and why you should immediately start looking into how to do this well for your nonprofit.

You avoid out of sight, out of mind

Maybe the most obvious reason to send more email is to stay top of mind.

If your community of support never thinks about you, then they’ll never think to help you.

However, if they know what is currently going on with your organization and if they know what support you need, it is much easier for them to lend a hand.

Sending regular email messages is a great way to stay top of mind with your community of support.

You can build a genuine relationship

Emailing more often allows you to build a relationship with your subscribers.

If you only reach out to someone four times a year, that doesn’t give much of a chance to engage them or create a dialogue.

And I’d argue that it suggests to your subscribers that they are not that important to your organization.

If you don’t feel the need to be in regular communication with them, how important can they be?

However, email more often and you send a message that their interest in your organization is a top priority.

Additionally, you have more opportunities to create genuine dialogue and learn from your community of support.

For example, you’ll have more opportunities to ask them to “hit reply” and tell you what they think.

You might be surprised at how many people will do just that and provide you with invaluable information about what is important to your subscribers.

You have more opportunities to call them to action

You know that to increase engagement every email should have only one call to action.

But if you only email them four times a year, then you only get to ask them to do four things.

However, email more often and you create more opportunities to get them to act.

Now you can actually take the time necessary to build engagement momentum.

Now you can send an email focused solely on growing the size of your Facebook page.

Then you can send an email focusing or your Twitter following.

Now you can send an email asking people to sign a petition or become a member or make a donation or attend the next event or invite a friend or whatever you want.

You now have ample opportunities to engage your readers in multiple ways.

Your subscribers will read more of your content

Yep, that’s right.

If you send shorter email messages more often, people will actually read more of your content.

Think about it.

When you send a 3,000-word newsletter, how many of those words do you think actually get read?

Maybe they’ll read one full story.

Maybe they’ll skim through a few stories.

But that’s it. Then the email gets deleted.

Now, instead, send them a 400-word email containing only one story.

They’ll read it because it is respecting what they are willing to take the time to do.

Then you send them a second story the following week about the same length.

As long as your first story was told well, they’ll read the second one, too.

Now they’ve already read more of your content than they did with the e-newsletter and they haven’t even received your third and fourth email yet.

You get more for less

Sending more email does not mean more work.

Instead of writing a monthly 3,000 word e-newsletters, you are writing short stories.

In fact, you can take your last newsletter and break it up into multiple emails just by sending the stories out one at a time.

And you can automate this process.

You could take the 8 stories in your next monthly email newsletter. Break them up into 8 email messages. Schedule them to be sent out once a week and now you’ve kept in touch with your subscribers for two months.

Now you’ve stayed top of mind for two months.

Now you’ve given them 8 opportunities to hit reply and tell you what they think or what they want.

Now you’ve asked them to do 8 different things over the course of two months.

Now they’ve actually read more of your content because you sent it to them in a manageable format.

You get all of this for the same amount of work as you spent writing one monthly newsletter.

But in fact, it is half the work because all of the content you sent out in your monthly newsletter actually took two months to send to your subscribers.

So, yeah. You get a lot more for less.


Sending email to your subscribers more often allows you to…

  1. Avoid out of sight out of mind
  2. Build a genuine relationship
  3. Engage them in many different ways
  4. Get them to read more of your content
  5. Get more for less

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I’ll start walking through the right way to do all of this today.

4 comments… add one
  • Do you have any stats to back this up? My colleagues don’t believe anything if it isn’t in a spreadsheet!

  • Jeremy

    Hi Jo – Are you looking for data to back up a specific reason mentioned in this post? Also, tell your colleagues that the most important data is the data collected from your own email marketing. See if you can get permission to test sending more email to a sample of your list. Compare the results and then you’ll have the data you need.

    • yes, I am looking for specific data to back up your post. We can track, of course, but like to know what the stats say BEFORE we try this method.

      • Jeremy

        Hi Jo,
        Download the 2016 M+R Benchmark report here:
        This report shows that the most successful nonprofits send more email on average than the others. Hopefully, this will provide the data you need to gain support to increase the number of emails you send.
        Note, however, that when you send more email messages you also need to focus on quality and relevance. You need to think about the content that will help you develop a relationship with your subscribers, not just get their money into your pockets.
        You’ve inspired me to write more about this so keep a lookout.
        Good luck and let me know if you have other questions.

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