Email is the one of the core ways to communicate with your audience. Eblast updates, e-newsletters and e-solicitations are all great tools for informing your stakeholders and inspiring them to take action and provide support.

But are you too often pushing emails to your entire database, only to see them get lost in the 350 billion emails being sent each year around the world? Or are you using targeted strategies to various segments, realizing that different types of recipients might respond more readily to emails geared specifically toward them?

Relevance is the name of the game when it comes to email marketing. Each and every email you send should be personally geared to the individual receiving it. Segmentation is the key to avoiding the clutter and the summertime months are a great time to begin the process.

First, take a long look at your database. Like most organizations – and businesses for that matter – you’ve probably been dripping and drabbing new emails into your list. The good news is your database is growing; the not-so-good news is it is probably not as organized as you need it to be.

Start by splitting up your audience into various groups. Because fundraising is your ultimate objective, let’s start with breaking down your donor database, which fortunately may be the easiest sub-group to segment. Start with current (past year) donors, skipped (two years ago) donors and lapsed donors (those who have not given for two to five years). Your annual or periodic solicitations should specifically speak to those three mindsets.

Within your donor database, the most important segment is your most generous or “major” givers, particularly those who have been giving consistently for multiple years. It’s up to you to decide where you can logically set that bar – $1,000, $5,000 or even $10,000. Messaging to major donors MUST be personalized (not just by first name) and written with great care and consideration of the preferences and passions of each individual or couple. You may consider using snail mail in place of an email for this key group.

When it comes to informing and inviting groups to different programs and events, gender and age are critical factors for segmenting your database. You may want to plan events, activities and giving opportunities specifically geared to men or women, for example.

Regarding age, your organization’s messaging and call to action should vary tremendously between a Millennial (born 1981 to 2000) than a Baby Boomer (born (1946 to 1964). Honing the data based on age may be a bit more challenging than the donor database; it may take a survey to flesh out ages and specific interests when it comes to demographics. Generational differences should most definitely be reflected in your social media strategies as well.

Ready to dive deep into your database? Ditch the broad approach and get precise with our help! Contact Andy Rose, our Chief Impact Officer, at or (561) 945-9356 today to set up a consultation. Oxygen tanks included!