5 Bloomerang Email Best Practices

Category: Best Practices

Email marketing is an important medium for nonprofits. It is relatively inexpensive, its results are measurable, and it’s immediate (compared to direct mail). Email marketing gives nonprofit organizations the opportunity to connect with constituents, build relationships, and deliver engaging communications in a highly recognizable and accepted format.

However, with all of its advantages, managing an email list can be challenging. Keeping up with subscriber preferences, likes, and dislikes can be a complicated process. Bloomerang’s built-in features can help you manage these complexities.

Bloomerang has the ability to manage subscribers, keep track of different subscriber preferences, and help you create engaging email messages for your constituents.

Bloomerang Email Best Practices

There are five Bloomerang email best practices.

  1. Let the email recipient (user) manage their email interests and opt-out preferences.
  2. Create email interests in Bloomerang that are differentiated from other email interests and are easy for email subscribers to understand.
  3. Add the email subscription widget to your website and allow your website users to opt-in to emails from your organization.
  4. Use email interests and opt-out preferences as the first level of filters for your emails.
  5. Setup a welcome email for new email subscribers and set the email as the confirmation email template for your email signup form.

This post will expand on each of these best practices in more detail.

Bloomerang Email Interests

Email interests are used to manage the email preferences of your email recipients.

Email recipients can choose to unsubscribe or manage their email preferences by clicking the links at the bottom of each email they receive. When a constituent clicks either link (“Unsubscribe” or “Manage Email Preferences”), Bloomerang gives the recipient four options.

  1. Use a different email address
  2. Subscribe to all mailings
  3. Only send me mailings based on my interests
  4. Unsubscribe from all mailings

Use a different address instead

This option allows email recipients to proactively manage their primary email address in Bloomerang, ensuring your organization has each constituent’s preferred address for email communications.

Subscribe to all mailings

If email recipients choose this option, they will receive all email communications from your organization in the future.

Only send me mailings based on my interests

If email recipients choose any of your email interests, they will only receive email communications from your organization based on the email interest lists you select when creating your emails in Bloomerang. They are opted-in to the email interests they select and opted-out of the email interests they don’t select.

Unsubscribes from all mailings

If email recipients choose this option, they will not receive any email communications from your organization in the future. They will remain a constituent in your database, but every email you create will exclude the opt-out constituents automatically. Therefore, it is impossible to send emails to those constituents who are unsubscribed from all mailings.

Email Interests and Subscriber Management

Let email recipients decide their preferences

It is a Bloomerang email best practice to let your email recipients select their email interests on their own. If you select an email interest manually for a constituent, you are bypassing the purpose of allowing email recipients the option to manage their own preferences.

Let your email subscribers define what emails they would like to receive. If they don’t have any email interests or opt-out preferences, then they are available to receive all emails from your organization, regardless of type.

Create differentiated and recognizable subscription lists

It is also a Bloomerang email best practice to create easily recognizable and differentiated email interests. Set up email interests that are relevant to your marketing efforts, but also make them easily distinguishable from other email interests.

The Bloomerang Email Signup Widget

Email subscribers enter the Bloomerang system a number of ways. They can enter the system via a donation page, manually when you convert or import data, manually when you enter a new constituent in the database, or when someone completes an Email Sign-up form on your website.

Bloomerang creates email signup widgets for you to put on your website. These widgets are pre-formatted and are linked to your database. When you paste the small snippet of widget code into your website, you can collect new email subscribers.

When someone subscribes to your emails via an email signup widget, they are entered into your Bloomerang database as a new constituent. No email interests are checked (because they haven’t opt-ed out or unsubscribed yet). Their account will have a first name, last name, and email address and Bloomerang will auto-fill the informal, formal, envelope, and recognition name. The subscriber is now ready to receive any type of email communication from your organization.

Adding an Email Signup Welcome Email

It is a best practice to offer these new subscribers a welcome email after they signup by customizing the confirmation email from the email signup widget form. This is an option for the email signup forms you create in Bloomerang.

Selecting Recipients for Your Emails

Determining the audience of your email communication is step one in Bloomerang. The first sets of filters for an email are based on opt-out and email interest distinctions. Additional filters for things like geographic region, gifts last week, etc. are the second step.

By selecting an email interest, you are telling Bloomerang to send the email to anyone who is opted-in to that email interest or anyone who is not opted-out of emails from your organization.

The email interest selection creates the initial pool of email recipients for your email communication. You can further segment this pool of recipients using Bloomerang filters. The filters are available on the “Filters” tab within the email editor.

Email is a powerful communication channel and a great way to stay in touch and connected with your constituents, donors, and supporters. Using a tool like Bloomerang can help you streamline your organization’s marketing efforts, save you time, and improve the way you communicate with your email subscribers. The combination of opt-in preferences and email interests will help you segment your email subscribers so you can provide them the right communications based on their specific preferences.

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