Let’s get this party started!

When are you most excited about something?  It could be a new shirt, a party, a concert, etc… We tend to me most excited about new things the minute we get them.  I love to shop. I’m one those people that has to wear my new item immediately.  Let’s take advantage of your participants’ enthusiasm after they sign up and get them to take immediate action.

Let’s keep our direct marketing hats on and ask ourselves “What would a direct marketing PRO do?” Knowing that people are more likely to take action within a couple weeks of signing up, how can we use this knowledge to encourage online activity?

First, what do you want your participants to do?  Personalize their page? Create their address book? Send emails?  Connect with their social network?

How about setting up a recurring or automatic email campaign based on when an individual signs up for an event? This way every participant will receive an email three days after they signed up, maybe they’ll get another email a couple days later and so on.  What’s cool about creating a recurring email series is your participants don’t have to wait for you to send them a monthly event update.  They’ll get the information they need as it’s relevant for where they are in the fundraising process.

Last week, I shared how easy it is to create email in Blackbaud Sphere thanks to the new Event Email Template [defunct link removed].  In addition to recruitment emails to past participants, you can also better target your fundraising support and encouragement messages.

I’m a big a fan of creating a welcome series for participants.  Here’s what you do.  Write 4 emails for team members and individuals (Non-Leaders) and each email should have one clear call to action i.e. personalize your webpage or create your address book.  My theory is that because you’ve asked someone to take one action that will lead to another action.  For example, if I spend a few minutes adding a photo or writing my story chances are when I’m done I will want someone to check it out. So, I’ll either email my friends or share my page on Facebook.  Either way people will learn about what I’m doing and hopefully make a donation.

What’s really cool is you can create recurring emails from Team Leaders and Non-Leaders.  For non-leaders the series will focus on fundraising: personalize your page, create your address book, send emails and post to facebook and twitter.  Your series for leaders should include a few more emails, which are focused on team building.  After personalizing their page and creating their address book, send them an email with tips for recruiting team members.  Then maybe one month after they’ve signed up send them an email with ideas for encouraging team member fundraising.

What I hope you’ll do is spend the next couple weeks developing and creating your email content for a couple recurring email series.  I’ve covered the email welcome kit.  Next week we’ll get creative with more fundraising encouragement messages.  So, are you ready to think like a Direct Marketing PRO?  Get started by creating your past participant recruitment messages and the welcome kit series.