Ep 249 | Email Strategies for NonProfits with Limited Resources with Andriy Boychuk

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With a smaller team it can feel hard to know what to prioritize when it comes to marketing. It may feel like you need (or should) do it all. Email is a powerful tool in your marketing toolbox. That doesn't mean you have to do it all at once. Instead, start with the goals and priorities in mind and build over time. Trust me, you'll never regret having an email list of donors and potential donors you can connect with.

What you'll learn:

→ when and how to prioritize email marketing.
→ power of adding value and lead magnets.
→ how often to send emails.
→ ways to repurpose social media in your emails.

Want to skip ahead? Here are key takeaways:

[4:52] It's all about doing what you need to do to raise money. This could be prioritizing personal interactions over digital strategies if that's not your skillset. Then, as your resources expand, so can your marketing strategy. The strategies should focus on acquisition.
[6:08] Encourage people to get on your email list by adding value. This is most commonly created through a lead magnet. It gives them immediate value and also helps you get their information. Don't forget to have a nurture sequence as a follow-up to continue adding value.
[17:04] Send your general newsletters weekly. This keeps you top of mind and allows you to share your mission more often. If you're strugling with what to put in your emails, repurpose the content you already have. Take high performing social media posts and put them in your emails.

Andriy Boychuk

Andriy Boychuk

Founder & CEO, Flowium

Learn more at: https://flowium.com 

Follow on Instagram @andriyboychuk 
Watch on YouTube @Flowium

 

March lead magnet - Fundraising Event Email Checklist: Ensuring Success Before and After the Event

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Fundraising Event Email Checklist: Ensuring Success Before and After the Event

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Full Transcript

Sami Bedell-Mulhern So if you are small organization with maybe one or two employees, or even if you're growing, but just don't have a large marketing team, and you know, you need to implement marketing or email marketing, but don't think you have the capacity to do it, this episode is for you. My guest today is Andriy Boychuk. And he is here to help share why we get in our own way when it comes to setting up email marketing, how we can support our teams, how we can get this done, even if we're only a team of one, you just started the organization and you're not even really sure where to get started. This is the episode for you.

Andriy is the founder and CEO for flowmium sorry, the flowium marketing agency. And so he just has a lot of insights on how we can kind of put these emails into our flow into our communication process, and what to focus on first, and where to go from there. So I hope that you enjoy this episode, it was a super fun one to record.

But before we get into it, this episode is brought to you by our March freebie of the month. And it is your checklist for emails, pre post and pre pre event post registration and follow up after the event has completed, it's going to give you the list of all of the emails that you'll need to create an advance some that you can even pre schedule and get going so that you can relieve some of that press pressure and stress from the work that goes into creating the event, the logistics and you know, as it gets closer to the event, things get busy. And after the event, you're just exhausted. So let's get all these emails ready to go. So you don't even have to worry about it. And you can just hit that send button when it's time. So that is our freebie for the month of March, you can grab it at https://thefirstclick.net/resources, that and any of the other freebies that we've launched this year, as well as some that have been on our website for quite some time. So I hope that you'll grab it and get your event going with these event emails. I can't wait to hear how you go with this game. For now, let's get into the episode.

Intro You're listening to the digital marketing therapy podcast. I'm your host, Sami Bedell-Mulhern. Each month we dive deep into a digital marketing or fundraising strategy that you can implement in your organization. Each week, you'll hear from guest experts, nonprofits, and myself on best practices, tips and resources to help you raise more money online and reach your organizational goals.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Everyone, please join me in welcoming Andriy to the podcast today. Thank you so much for joining us.

Andriy Boychuk Sure. Thank you for having me.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern So we're still carrying on in our month of email marketing, which is one of my most favorite topics. So I'm so excited that you're here because it's one of your favorite topics as well. But from your perspective, I would just like to kick it off with kind of why email marketing is something that you love to do. And why do you think it's such a powerful tool?

Andriy Boychuk It's powerful, because you own the contact information of your user prospects, your customers, your donor, and you are in charge in offered and what kind of message you are able to send them. There is no third party who's controlling what thing you can or cannot say, you do not pay for emails you send out you can send three emails per day or one email per month, and it will cost you the same.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, I love that. It's so true. So why do you think after what you just said, Why do you think that so many people avoid it or think that it's not an effective method of marketing.

Andriy Boychuk I think that social media, the organic social media free one, as well as a paid advertising, this is like, all marketers talk about this. And it sounds like very easy. You pay and you get something in return, while email marketing something that some people think it's very technical, it's hard to set up, but also there, you need to put a lot of work in it. Because to create one post my like from like from different perspective, you might think it's less work than create the email. So I think that's why, but either social media or email marketing is just two different marketing stages, social media and paid advertising. It's more about awareness, email marketing, it's more about conversion as well as retention.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah. So do you kind of see them playing hand in hand or just to kind of put you on the spot here just for your thoughts, but would you prefer email marketing, or do you think it just needs to go in line with your social media you should have both.

Andriy Boychuk If you have, if you have like extremely, extremely limited resources or no resources whatsoever. I would say do what, whatever you need to do to get money. And so if you need to do door knocking, do door knocking or focus on email marketing. But if you have a little bit more resources set up some basic basic email marketing may be an opt in form as well as a follow up sequence. And but mostly focus on acquisition, because if people don't know that you exist, there's no I mean, there's the email marketing will not be good for your business. Yeah, foundation.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern So when we talked previously, you were kind of sharing how some really big companies do email marketing really well, some really big companies don't do email marketing really well. So you know, resources are a thing, but it's more just kind of about really building that foundational strategy. Right? So what are some of like, the common mistakes that you see people making when it comes to developing their strategy, regardless of how big or small their list is, or their reaches?

Andriy Boychuk Just want to confirm like, your audience mostly is somebody who works in a non for profit charity sector is that correct? Okay, so, so, quick story. Like back in 2022. When the war started in Ukraine, I started to volunteer for non for profit organization, helping building the medical case for the funders in Ukraine. So I didn't do anything professionally. But it's like I was trying to do something that I know. But my professional curiosity kicked and I started to research what other big, big non for profit is doing from email marketing perspective. So I selected and biggest one in us, like Red Cross, what the other I like the one of the biggest one and only, I believe only five of them. Sorry, only two of them have a very clear opt in, opt in for emails, or newsletter, or some kind of updates, only one of them have some kind of lead magnet to kind of provide some incentive for people to opt in to their list. And all others just offer like right from the beginning, you just visit their website, like donate. It's like we always say in our companies like proposing on the first date, you don't know nothing about this organization, but they asking you for money right away. It might it might be too, too aggressive. So I notice that people the biggest mistake, people not collecting their contact information in their emails.

Andriy Boychuk And second, which goes hand in hand is like not providing some value, the best they had is sign up for our newsletter. So right now, I'm fractional CFO of CMO for another Ukrainian non for profit. And I'm doing this pro bono as a volunteer. So we offer like 10 ways how you can support Ukraine for free. And it's a simple checklist, simple ways how you can support it's one pager, but people who visit our website, they're more likely to opt in versus like donate right away. And when they opt in, we have different kinds of sequences to nurture them before asking for donation. So this is the biggest thing that I seen non for profit sector. There's no good way for for people to help them.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, I see so often on nonprofit websites, it just says sign up for our newsletter and people don't like to do that because they don't know what there's no expectation. What am I getting? What are you going to start sending me? No, you're just going to ask me for money all the time. So I think that's great. And lead magnets are something that's so popular and common in all other sectors of the business space but not in nonprofits because I think we tend to look at it from okay you're here to help us not how can we help and support you?

Andriy Boychuk Yeah, so I had because I was still working on the article to write about this but Feeding America they have a good lead magnets is like get tips on easy and I lost it. Get tips on easy ways to fight hunger as a family. And you when you enter your email, they get the guide they delivering you the guide about this. This like there was all steps. So this is a great way it's online with their mission. And when you download this guide, I bet they will start to follow up, nurture you and eventually ask you for money for donations.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern So if you're a smaller organization, you don't have a huge team and you're hearing things like guides and Downloadables. And we might automatically feel like it has to be some super fancy over designed thing. But, you know, we can start off with something super simple. It's more about the quality of the content, right? And then it being kind of a flashy, designed piece. Right?

Andriy Boychuk Yeah, yeah. And I was, like, we weren't, I think all of us wants to be like perfectionist logical, so it looks beautiful. But listen, when they opted in, first of all, they're allowed, like, opted in the loader, You Your Guide, and like, Oh, it's terrible design. So let me unsubscribe. I don't think it will happen. And people don't think like that. So it can be simple. PDF, Word, Doc, Word doc was a checklist, it can be just nicely formatted, or not even nicely formatted. Just list of things that you want to share with them. I don't know like how to fight hunger, how you can support you're somebody who was just abused how to support somebody else. So just some maybe what is your cause? What is your mission to help was that's why you're raising money. But maybe you can provide the tips and techniques, strategies, how to do the same thing for free and use this as a lead magnet on your website.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, so let's talk about follow up from that, because you kind of mentioned it briefly. You know, once somebody opts in, you know, hopefully, you're going to be following up. But what might that look like? Because we want to have that all kind of built in that whole journey kind of built in before we kind of publish this lead magnet. So how might we want to follow up with people immediately after donate? Or after they get this downloadable?

Andriy Boychuk So I mean, if if they opting in for your downloadables, first, you need to send them a confirmation email, like, Hey, thank you for downloading this guide. And here's the link for the guide in case you missed it. So like, just provide them the Guide button. If we talking about the general follow up. First, it needs to be like welcome email whilst being mean people to your organization. And it would, it's cool to have like, let our style email from the founder or the president of the organization, tell them what are the organization about what is your mission words, your values, share, maybe some backstory like how it was created. Again, no crazy, you don't need to do crazy design, if a simple text based email, but includes those those points, and very important to have links back to your website so people can elect if it's story, you can write the short blurb and say like, click here to read the full story of our organization. So this email number one, email number two, typically, it's like we would like to ask typically, we like to share some kinds of testimonials. Maybe you have, like some success stories of how your organization impacted people's lives, or maybe testimonials from other donors, oh, I donated and they use my money to do X, Y, and Z. Then email number three can be something like, Hey, follow up, give them options, how to follow up with you on different social media. And it's very important not just to provide the list of social media, but tell them if they follow you on Instagram, they will receive this kind of content, if they follow on YouTube, they will fall like find different kinds of content. So just give them idea why they should follow you on different social media because it's not like you should not post everywhere the same thing. And then when you have some basic nurturing, maybe talk about some of your projects, some some your initiatives, and maybe email number four or five, then you start to ask for some donations.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, and how many days in between these emails do you recommend? I mean, I know there's a bit of testing that goes into all of this but do you have a general rule of thumb of where you start?

Andriy Boychuk Yeah, so typically between two to three days between them so the first and second can be one day apart but the other one to two apart?

Sami Bedell-Mulhern And I love that you said they just Oh, sorry. No, go ahead. There's a bit of a delay.

Andriy Boychuk Here sir, then I said remember they just found out about your organization, they just opted in. So at the beginning, you want to be faster like so they're shorter delay to communication and then you can make those delays between email longer.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, and I love that you said plain text email. Because I think a lot of times some one of the things that holds people back is they think they have to have these beautifully designed emails but you know, simple plain text feels more personal feels They're connected and they're easier to put together, right?

Andriy Boychuk Yeah. So yes, it's extremely easy to put it together, you just need to write it up, like in a matter of like 5-10 minutes, and it's ready, you can set it up. When you have more resources in the future is there you have a designer, or somebody who knows how to set up, set things up, you can improve it. But today, start simple. And tax base emails doesn't mean it's bad. Actually, it's even sometimes even better than well designed emails, because they get, there's more chances they get, they will get into people's inboxes. So we have a one follow up sequence in our organization that we set up. It's 32 days, there's 32, delays from the last donation. And, and in that email, we say something hey, such a such name. We, my team asked me, asked me to follow up with you. In case you have any questions, here's our latest report about our projects bubble. And shockingly, people are responding to that email, like I wrote that email, you know, like they are responding like how I don't have any questions, or thank you very much for reaching out. They they responding and to if people respond to your emails from email marketing perspective, it's very good for your deliverability.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, that's awesome. So once they're done with that welcome sequence, and they're going into just your general email newsletter. So I want to ask, you know, kind of consistency wise, like, you know, how important is it for us to also be having that general newsletter be going out regularly, if we're having people opt into our email, because I think a lot of times people will opt in, and then they don't hear from you again, until you are asking for you're in a fundraising campaign, right, as opposed to kind of sharing updates along the way.

Andriy Boychuk So my recommendation, even with very limited resources to do it once once a week, even if you don't like it, organization of one, do plain text, plain text, email each week, I think there's a lot of things going on in your organization. So you can share some things. It can be bullet point format, or maybe in subsections. Let's say if you have five projects or three projects, maybe have a sections in your email and just update on each project. But do it on a weekly basis. And it would be easier than when you do fundraising to ask for money. Because you're like giving, giving giving than you're asking, you're sharing, sharing, sharing you asking versus that silence of like, Hey, we're doing fundraising, can you please donate?

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, I agree with with that. And I think the also just that one topic, one email, when you're doing it weekly, you don't have to share everything all at once you You will find that you have little snippets of things that you can share that are exciting. I feel like once you start getting into that rhythm, you actually feel like you have more than you have time to even say and those weekly emails become pretty easy.

Andriy Boychuk So this is what we do. So because we are sending two emails per week, but we do it in two languages. So we have one in Ukrainian and one in English. So this is what we do. So we are posting on social media, three times, sometimes five times per week on social media. So with what we do, we just take three of the best or two of the basketballs that we believe and just include it in the newsletter. So there's no extra work, maybe sometimes you put like a customize the intro to the email, like, Hey, this is the latest updates for this week. And then putting that information as blocks.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern So repurposing content, and you could do it the other way around, right? If you prefer to write emails first, you could write your emails and then create your social media posts from that as well. Right. Yeah. Um, so, you know, getting people into your list is kind of one of the things that you say is something nonprofits aren't doing well, is there another kind of mistake or thing that you see that organizations could improve on? That maybe they're not thinking about?

Andriy Boychuk In terms of I see that a lot of like your charities nonprofit organization. They do. Go okay to good job in terms of sending out newsletters. Let me step back. So there's two parts. There's email marketing There's two parts. There's automated methods, automated emails like behavior triggered emails, as well as campaigns newsletter broadcasts, broadcast this is that we sending manually each week, each month each day, how often you want if we select a segment or list of people and we are sending them one or two emails, behavior trigger emails, automation flows sequences they call differently in different software. It's this is I personally see and believe that nonprofits are weak in this in this area. So I do see some nonprofits, they have welcome emails, and we just discussed welcome automation with just this calendar. Welcome and follow up, like welcome social media testimonial as for donation. So they do have that, but they don't have the rest, giving you a sub few examples. Somebody has started, started donating. And I don't know, like their own died, their kids distracted them, something happened credit card didn't go through. So they have a very they committed to donate, but something happened and they couldn't. But you have their email. So now you can follow up with them and say, hey, it looks like you tried donate, but you didn't donate. And that kind of follow up will generate extra donation to you. So it's not last donor, they can still donate your so I don't see those kinds of automations or somebody visiting your website and checking specific initiatives or checking your reports or checking donation page, but they didn't donate. Also, you can follow up and say hey, do you have any questions? Also the automations, I told you about like somebody donated 30 days, again, you need to understand to calculate, like, how often do people donate to you? Is this like every 30 days every six months? And then set up a follow up sequence? Like if they did not donate for 30 or 30 days? Maybe on the 31st day of wobble them? Hey, do you have any questions? Can I help you somehow to start that conversation. So those are just examples of some automation that I don't see in non for profit, or one more very important. One, they donated, one they donated. First of all, you get with email marketing, you can automate the tax receipt, this is the biggest thing, in non for profit, like to deliver those tax receipts, everybody's waiting to add to end of the year to do them. But honestly, was was email marketing. You can do that with each donation. And people can have those nice, nice tax receipts. And after the Donate to have another, like nurturing serious students to retain them.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, and I think if you're listening to this, because those are all great ideas, there's the two things that I would say is one when you shop Amazon, or whatever, pay attention to the emails that you get, like, you know, anytime you're shopping online, right that those abandoned cart emails, those, hey, you purchase this now you might like that, like use those that you get in your inbox to like spark some creativity and how you set this up. But if you're like, there's how would I even know where those people are? I mean, just checking with your CRM, check in with your email service provider, and ask them how they kind of have the some, some are better than others at providing those features. But I think yeah, what you're saying is great, just ask your tech and figure out what capabilities you have. And then it's automated and it runs runs in the background, right? Yes, yes. You can set it up once. Yep, well set it up once. But I would also recommend, I mean, I maybe I don't know, how often do you recommend people go through and review their automations to make sure the language is still good? Like, do you typically do that on an annual basis or like, you know, on a quarterly basis go through to make sure that nothing's changed in your sequences or in your, in your automations? That might need to be updated? Yeah. So again, I'm always thinking to what you said before, like, when you have limited resources, versus you know, the poor guy, that's nice, nice, nice theory in but it doesn't always work. So from technical perspective, set it and forget it. But from marketing perspective, from messaging perspective, of course, you need to review constantly, maybe every three months, maybe often. And also you need to check the analytics. Let's say if some emails does not perform, we need to go back and see why they're not working. Maybe the link is broken or maybe messaging is not right or something is off. So you need to Split, just figure out what's going on. Yeah, yeah, and most platforms will allow you to do that pretty easily these days, which is nice. Of course. Yeah. Um, well, I think you've given people a lot of things to consider and a lot of things to go to the drawing board and get creative with and have fun. My kind of last question is really just from a messaging and storytelling perspective. Like, what are your thoughts on how we write the emails like being more conversational versus being super polished and buttoned up and professional? Like, should we be writing these in a way that's kind of engaging with our people? Like, kind of which versions and again, I know you need to test but which versions do you find kind of tend to get better replies,

Andriy Boychuk when it's reading from the first person looks like it's reading for you not as a general marketing message. So there's two types. So when you do the newsletter, newsletter, it's more like a report or like update was going on was was your organization. So it's, it can be be a little bit more polished. But honestly, like I, English is my second language, and I'm not listening to my grammar is not the greatest. So I use challenge up to fix my grammar. I use GPD just to proofread my English. But it's more kind of official more like an not analytical more official, like, Hey, this is what happened for this week. But when you create those automation sequences, I would recommend to do the storytelling, I would recommend to do it from the first person, like, like you wrote, writing the email to your friend, to be kind of professional, but at the same time casual so people can feel easy to kind of reply to your email. So they don't it's like, oh, it's like too corporate or too technical. They are like, oh, can they reply and say thank you, thank you for what you're doing, or I have a question.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, my favorite replies are speaking of grammar and typos. My favorite ones are when people write me back, and they're like, Hey, do you know there's a typo in your email. And, you know, I used to, you know, sometimes that doesn't happen all the time. But I even those opportunities are like, Oh, they took time to write me back. So I can now just start a conversation and kind of have fun with them and see where see where it goes. Because they would have never written me back otherwise. But sometimes those mistakes and things like that, that happen, you feel bad when those emails come back to you. But it's an opportunity to have a conversation. So just like you said, at the beginning, perfectionism can stop us from doing a lot of this stuff. But it's just about getting getting going. I agree. I agree. So any other last words or kind of tips or inspiration to get people going in email marketing, that you want to share before we wrap this up?

Andriy Boychuk Sure. So here's some, if you're still thinking Should we do it or not do so here's a general rule of thumb, you will get on average, between 50 cents to $1. For each email, each recipient. So if you're sending 2000 people, one email, it means you will get between 500 to $1,000 donation. And if you send to the same list next week, you should expect the same. So think about it, and calculate the return on investment. But it's very lucrative marketing channel. And I strongly recommend to invest either your time or your money or like like some resources like and dedicate, dedicate something to this and develop it in your organization because it will be impactful impact impactful for you. Sorry, no worries.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Well, Andre, thank you so much for taking time to join. Join me and share your insights with our listeners today. If people want to connect with you and learn a little bit more about your agency in your organization, how do they do that?

Andriy Boychuk Sure, you can go to flow real it's F L O W I U M.com. Or you can find me on LinkedIn. I'm their active their first name and last name Andriy Boychuk.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Yeah, and we'll link up everything in the show notes for this episode at https://thefirstclick.net/249 so you can grab all of that there. But thank you so much for being here today.

Andriy Boychuk Thank you for having me.

Sami Bedell-Mulhern Okay, so what do you think? Are you inspired and ready to jump into email? Even if you thought before you didn't have the time energy capacity, whatever to get it done. I really hope that you do because as you know, email can be such an important and impactful part of your organization in your business when it comes to communicating and mass with your donors, sharing your impact and getting those conversions and raising more money. Now, obviously, email isn't the only thing out there, but it is really critical and important. So thank you for taking the time to join us this month as we've been talking about email marketing. I hope that you are inspired and excited to kind of jump in and or reengage with your list. For now, make sure you subscribe wherever you've listened to this podcast, and make sure you grab the show notes for this episode at https://thefirstclick.net/249. I can't wait to see you in the next one.

 

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