5 Questions to Ask Before Sending Your Next Newsletter

If you’re like most nonprofits, you’re probably sending a lot of messages through mailing lists.

Newsletters, emails about upcoming events, calls for donations, or recruiting volunteers.

But are you sending the right messages to the right people and at the right time? Or are you just distributing emails without a plan?

If you are unsure about the answer, here are 5 questions you should ask before sending your next email:

1. Why are we sending this email?

Is this news that people really want to get? Or is it just important for the management team (“We are so excited to have our new board member!”)? The more your communication goals align with what your community wants, the better engagement there will be.

2. Who will receive this email?

All our mailing list subscribers were not created equal. Some gave us thousands of shekels in donations, while others subscribed simply because a friend added their name to the list. Begin by identifying some specific audiences: volunteers, regular donors, supporters, ambassadors, etc. This is where segmenting audiences will be helpful.

3. What will my recipients gain from this?

Does the content of our message add value to the relationship we have with our subscribers? For example, vegan recipes in a weekly newsletter aimed at avid animal rights advocates are content that can work and give value.

4. Where do we send readers to?

Each email must include a call to action. Always suggest the next step (the next click). Whether it’s watching a video or signing a petition, subscription involvement deals with small steps. A lot of small clicks is like a lot of times you get a “yes” that often leads to one big “yes”.

5. When should you send the email?

Yes, the study may say 15:00 on Thursday (this always changes by the way), but that does not mean that Thursday will work for your subscribers. Find out what might work for your audience by splitting newsletter submission times. For example, 33% on Sunday, 33% on Wednesday, and 33% on Friday. Your analytics analysis should help reveal the best day to send to subscribers (the day most people commented on/opened the post).

Any more questions you think one should ask before sending the next email? Please share.