The best email marketing platforms for nonprofits
Wednesday, April 03, 2019
Did you know that last year marked the 40th year businesses have been using email for marketing purposes? A lot has changed in those 40 years!
Email marketing can be a great way to communicate with your donors throughout the year as well as support your ongoing online fundraising initiatives. While you may send emails through a personal email account, there are several benefits for nonprofits to use an email marketing platform. These tools create an easy way to communicate with your donors, fans and other constituents in a consistent manner.
Third-party email marketing platforms can provide you with important information such as how many people open your email, how many people click on the links inside (and which ones) and how many emails no longer go through (i.e. the bounce rate) so that you can stay on top of list clean-up.
Our top picks: Email marketing platforms to consider
While there are many email marketing platforms out there, here is a short list that can be helpful when vetting tool available for your nonprofit email marketing.
Why we love it: Mailchimp Mailchimp’s pricing is also based on list size; they offer a great tool on their website where you can calculate your monthly price based on your list. They offer a host of integrations with many platforms including Salesforce, Square, WooCommerce and more. One snafu that we find, however, is in audience segmentation and automated email sequences. They are a bit tricky and require a bit more work than simply clicking on multiple list choices at once.
Nonprofit pricing? While they do not offer a discount for nonprofits, there is a free option as long as your list is under 2,000 subscribers.
Why we love it: From the moment you sign up, you are able to get rolling with email creation. While you can choose to use any one of their pre-designed templates, Constant Contact also offers one-time fees to customize a template based on your visual brand (typically by using your website as a guide). Constant Contact also provides a very easy way to tag those on your list (by donor type, for example) and allows you to send the same email campaign to multiple lists at a time by a simple check-the-box method.
Nonprofit pricing? Yes. Constant Contact offers both 60-day free trials and nonprofit pricing.
Why we love it: For those who are non-committal, Campaign Monitor also offers the option to pay per campaign instead of signing up for an ongoing contract. This can be a great way to test out various platforms. In addition to templates and list segmentation, Campaign Monitor also provides ways to personalize campaigns with dynamic content. This allows you to swap out images or messaging based on the individual subscriber as a way to personalize campaigns. For instance, you may want to send different images to support content depending on whether they are male or female or where their age falls within your donor demographics.
Nonprofit pricing? Yes. Nonprofits are able to contact the sales team in order to take advantage of a 15% discount. Other price monthly price points are provided from between $9 and $149.
Why we love it: Pre-formatted content blocks make it easy to modify content to match your brand via this email marketing platform. Vertical Response also provides the ability for you to automatically send an email follow-up to those that didn’t open your message the first time. Using autoresponders and automated email options can be a great way to boost your online fundraising and donor engagement. A/B testing, email list forms and integration with Salesforce and Magento are additional features this software provides.
Nonprofit pricing? Yes. There is a nonprofit discount available along with price points from anywhere between $11/month up to $196/month. All prices are based on email list size.
Why we love it: If you like the option of managing your email campaigns from anywhere, Emma’s free mobile app might appeal to you. With its easy interface, Emma also provides integration for Shopify and Salesforce as well as mailing scores to give you intel on how your campaigns look and/or might perform. Dynamic content is also available on this platform along with list segmentation.
Nonprofit pricing? While there is not a specific price point for nonprofits, Emma offers packages from $89/month up to $229/month
All of the platforms outlined above also have responsive template options; keep that in mind when crafting your campaigns as many of your donors will be reading those messages via their phones or other mobile devices. Additionally, whatever email marketing platform you choose, a benefit for nonprofits is to ensure that it integrates nicely with other platforms that you use. Using an app like Zapier can help (and our 4aGoodCause app is among the 1,000+ apps that can “zap” together this way).
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