Jake Brewer shared his great post about making email advocacy alerts interesting to and useful for the receivers.
He laments the low open rates of so many email advocacy alerts and the sameness of them. Here is his outline of a typical such email:
SUBJ: Something catchy/funny/intriguing/pun to get you to open the email
Here is the first line in which I try to surprise you or say something memorable so you’ll keep going down.
Now I back up that sentence with some facts, and tell you what’s happening out in the world that needs your action.
Link 1: http://DoThisActionRightNow.com
More information describing the problem, and why our action is going to help – maybe even solve – the problem. We really need to do this!
Link 2: http://PleaseActNow.com (going to the same place as link 1)
Something nice that sums it all up and puts things in context, as well as thanking you for your support.
PS Here’s a link to something else I want you to see, knowing that the PS is one of the most clicked through parts of an email. http://WatchOurAwesomeVideo.com
Jake’s analysis of the need for future emails to have a clear three stage design – summarize the problem, offer an analysis and then an action. It is similar to what I heard during my latest Social Good podcast from Marc Sirkin of Autism Speaks and Kivi Leroux Miller.
The only addition I’d make to Jake’s anaysis is a point that Marc made on the podcast which is the need for organizations to be more explicit about asking potential constituents what information they want to receive. Casting a wide net and sending everyone the same information on the same channels is a waste of everyone’s time and energy. Asking supporters what they want to hear about, when and how, which offers the risk of potentially reducing the overall email list is awfully important. And listening to what they hate to say about your email alerts is equally important.