The Catholic Fundraiser

How Donors Respond to Your Emails: What Works and What You Should Be Doing Differently

Posted by Kristen Schultz Jaarda, JD, LLM on 11/1/17 1:30 PM

What are the best ways to increase email performance and response rates? How do colors and fonts impact readability? Does the date and time that emails are sent affect donor interest? Crescendo’s 2016 email study Experiments in Email Marketing: Principles of Effective Emails Based on A/B Testing sought to answer those questions and more.

The study used the scientific method known as "A/B testing" — sometimes called "split testing" or "bucket testing." Crescendo designed custom emails for six different charities to test how donors would respond. Each test involved two or more emails that were sent to segmented portions of a charity's email list and the emails were identical except for a single variable. For example, an email testing subject lines would have been identical in all respects except for using two different subject lines. This article will share some of the lessons learned about effective use of emails for donor engagement.

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Topics: Donor engagement, Email Performance

About The Catholic Fundraiser

In this weekly blog we share tips, tactics and case studies for professionals in the Catholic fundraising community. Learn how to advance your mission with articles on technology, donor engagement, nonprofit leadership, social media, and emerging trends.

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