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How a Nonprofit Can Use Email Marketing to Increase Revenue

By: Brittany Engelmann-- 2017-04-18 6:00 am --

If your nonprofit isn’t using email marketing software to communicate with your supporters and drive donations, you’re likely missing out a big chance for engagement. Read on for ideas on how you can take advantage of potentially overlooked opportunities for donations and other income using email marketing.

Have a communications plan

There are lots of great email marketing service providers out there, and the good news is that most of them offer a monthly discount to nonprofits. But signing up for service is just the first step. These services are a tool, and your success depends on how you use them.

Start with a communications plan that dictates what emails you will send and when. Planning these out at least a few months ahead of time will allow you to stay on track, assign tasks and delegate.

One of the most important aspects of a successful email marketing program is consistency, and the best way to be consistent is to plan ahead.


To keep your supporters engaged send regular email newsletter updates.

Even with the use of social media on the rise and the idea of newsletters on the decline for the private sector, nonprofit donors and supporters still engage with these kinds emails from organizations they are involved with.

If you’re engaging your supporters regularly and demonstrating the impact they have on your organization, they are far more likely to respond to donation appeals.

Donation appeals

Once you have an established schedule of communications and engagement, it’s much easier to ask your supporters for donations.

As a best practice, having a link to donate somewhere in your basic email template is good idea. However, it’s also acceptable to make a direct ask a few times a year.

How often this should be varies for each organization. If you’re just starting out, #GivingTuesday and end-of-year appeals are a safe bet. Another option is encouraging people to conduct personal fundraisers for special occasions like birthdays.


A less often used fundraising tactic is hosting an eCommerce shop on your nonprofit website. Carrying items in your shop that appeal directly to your donor base (NPR is a great example) can be a boon for your nonprofit.

To drive traffic to your shop, promote items in your email marketing campaigns to let people know what you have to offer and encourage them to visit.

To stock your shop, explore DollarDays for items that appeal to your supporters. Whatever you're looking for, our dedicated sales team will work with you to get you what you need at great prices. Let our team help you through the shopping, checkout, and post-purchase process. With over 260,000 products on our site today, we're confident we can fulfill your requests.

Give-Back Program

DollarDays 5% Give-Back Program: When your supporters shop at DollarDays, they will be prompted at checkout to nominate their favorite nonprofit (you).  Once they do, we’ll donate 5% of their total merchandise purchase to your organization!

Contact us today and let us know how we can help your organization!