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“How often is too often?”

This is a question I get asked a lot when talking about emailing donors with my clients. And while I can’t give you a magic number, I can give you an answer…

It all depends on what you send.

If you’re sending your donors EDMs full of things they don’t care about and information they’re not interested in… then even once or twice a month could be enough to turn them off!

On the other hand, I’ve had clients who email their donors every week – sometimes more during appeals – and their emails continually bring in the $$$.

For your tax appeal this year, I suggest you should plan a longer email campaign, a series of 6-10 EDMs… especially if you have a group of donors that are not mailable and have requested email only.

You want me to send EDMs how often?

Now, I’ve had plenty of clients balk at that kind of number… and maybe you’re feeling the same way…

“June! We can’t send too many emails! They’ll be sick of hearing from us!”

But here are three things you should remember…

First up, there’s no such thing as “too many emails” when you’re sending content that your donors are actually interested in. Especially when it’s content that loves and nurtures them… and which boosts their donor wellbeing! (Why? You can read more about donor psychology and the UK research that unpacks it in: Alternatives to “donor as hero” – based on proven donor psychology.)

Secondly, I’m not talking about sending 6 – 10 hard, financial ask EDMs… nor would I recommend it! In fact, your carefully crafted campaign should comprise a combo of financial asks, impact stories and donor engagement asks. All of them should be written with your donor at the heart and centre… and related to your appeal to remind your donor that it’s ongoing.

Thirdly, (and most importantly) … you are not the only organisation emailing your donors! This is TRUER at this time of year than any other! Yes, your donors are special… but it’s precisely because they’re special that they are more likely to give to multiple organisations. So don’t miss out on talking to them when other charities are!

SWIPE this EDM campaign blueprint for your tax appeal this year!

Here’s a quick map of what your 8 EDM campaign might look like. You have my permission to swipe it and use it for your tax appeal this year!

EDM 1 – Your campaign kick-off.

Launch your tax appeal with a hard ask. This should be based on you DM if you’ve written one.

EDM 2 – Tell them a powerful story.

Focus on a personal or specific case study. This could be more of your tax appeal hero’s story or the story of one of their family members if you have enough content. Alternatively, tell the story of another beneficiary, making sure you explain the link to your hero and / or your tax appeal. Feature a soft ask.

EDM 3 – Showcase your photos.

Send a photo-based email featuring images from the case study – gorgeous pics of your hero and their family… or if you’re an environmental, wildlife or animal charity, pictures of beautiful landscapes, stunning vistas and your furry or feathered friends. And don’t forget to make those captions nurturing and donor-centric! Pair it with a soft ask.

EDM 4 – You case worker/ field specialist / expert email.

Feature key quotes from your specialist. They can talk about the urgent need and / or about your tax appeal hero. This time, use a hard ask.

EDM 5 – Your “how to” email.

Explain the mechanisms of how your charity will help solve a specific problem and why the donor’s gift is needed for the solution. You might want to link this to your tax appeal gift handles. Again, use a hard ask.

EDM 6 – Your general thank you email… schedule 1 week before campaign deadline!

When you acknowledge all who have already given, you are also providing social proof to those who are yet to give. Reiterate the need with a soft ask.

(Note: this EDM is not to be confused with your – hopefully! – automated and specific thank you message which you are sending to every donor who gives.)

EDM 7 – Send them a short, emotive video… schedule 3 days before campaign deadline!

This should be a quick and heartfelt message from the CEO or case worker, urging people to give and explaining why it’s important.

(Note: this video doesn’t need to be of professional quality… in fact, sometimes it’s better if it isn’t! I love rough and ready video because it screams “AUTHENTIC”.)

EDM 8 – Your LAST DAY reminder… schedule (unsurprisingly) on the day of your giving deadline!

This should be short, punchy and urgent. Let your donor know it’s their last day to [INSERT YOUR CAMPAIGN OFFER HERE]… and pair it with hard a ask.

And there you have it in a nutshell. Your EDM Campaign blueprint for your upcoming tax appeal!

Obviously, these are ideas only… and subject to the availability of your content. So if this doesn’t seem like quite the right fit for you, or your team just doesn’t have the time to write 8 EDMs, I’d love to help you create an EDM campaign for your tax appeal that your donors just can’t wait to open!

Use Calendly to book a meeting with me at a time that suits you… and kick off your planning.

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