How to Use Email and Facebook to Promote a Local Fundraising Event

Social NetworkingIf you are having a local fundraising event, why not exploit Facebook and email to get the word out? I mean let’s face it, who do you think doesn’t have Facebook or an email account? If you can get the word out through these media, you can expect more results and lesser expenses compared to having to rely mainly on flyers and tarpaulins.

How to use Facebook

Facebook is not only a good way to connect with relatives and friends, it also an excellent tool to announce a fundraising event. Think about it, what you’ve got in there is already a captured audience, compared to flyers and tarpaulins wherein people can choose not to read or even look at them. People on Facebook can choose to ignore you as well but, it is less likely because what you’ve got there are people who know and trust you. Here’s how you can use Facebook to promote a fundraising event:

  1. Create and event – Create an event in Facebook ideally on the Fundraiser’s own account. Make sure that after you filled in the necessary details, that you click “anyone can view and RSVP” so that it is made public. You should also click “show guest list on event page” so that people can see who are invited and can invite new people. Once the event goes live and you have invited your friends and they have RSVP, their friends can now see it on their wall too. This will make your invitation viral.
  2. Post the event on your wall – On your personal Facebook account, you can also post the event on your wall and invite your friends too. If this is a ticket event, make sure to post a link to where they can buy the tickets.
  3. Post regular updates – Make sure to post regular updates so that those who are coming will be informed. Soon the event will be on your friend’s, friends and friends wall too.

How to Use Email

Before there was Facebook, email is the way to send our words for fundraising and it still a very effective tool to inform. A lot of infomercials are still using emails and the trend will like to continue in the years to come. Here’s how you can use email to send the word out:

  1. Design the flow of mails – You don’t just send the mails blindly, it has to follow a design flow. For example, you can start with a request, then you follow it up with supporting quotes and related client’s story. You can then send a third mail encouraging people to donate and a fourth, thanking them.
  2. Build an subscriber list – We have put together an article detailing the importance of a quality subscriber list. If the list is not qualified, you cannot expect a good performance.
  3. Create an effective email – When writing an email for fundraising, make sure that you fill in the necessary details but don’t make it too verbose that the recipient will be tempted to delete it.
  4. Choose the best broadcast tool – This is the caveat of email; without a good broadcast tool, you will be sending it one by one or you can cc it to everybody in the list. A broadcast tool will make the job a lot easier because it can send thousands of emails at once.

When creating a charity event, your goal should be to minimize the overall expenses so that all the proceeds raised will go directly to the charity. Using Facebook and email accomplished just this so if you haven’t done it yet, you better start now.

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Email Fundraising: General

Email FundraisingOne of the most frustrating, and on-going challenges for churches, para church ministries and non-profit organizations is fundraising.  There are of course, some “tried and true” methods, but everyone is always looking for new ways to accomplish this goal. Technology is opening some new doors, and one of those is email fundraising.

Pathmaker Marketing LLC, an E-mail Marketing Firm, has been most successful in assisting their clients with e-mail fundraising. Truly E-Mail Marketing Specialists, they know that there are several things to keep in mind when you begin your email fundraising campaign.

First, you need to use your common sense.  You are, after all, raising money for a cause.  As a result, you are going to be most successful when you contact individuals who are already supporters of that cause.  Here, you do want to “preach to the choir.”  Your goal is not to solicit new supporters.  As a result, you will want to use your current database of supporters.  Again, this is not a “prospecting tool”!

You also need to consider that this program works best when it is part of an over-all communications strategy.  This includes utilizing the mail, phone, and “in person” contacts.  These all have their own individual strengths and, when combined with your e-mail campaign, will result in you being most effective.

As any Professional E-Mail Marketing Service will tell you, email has its own set of metrics.  First of all, you need to keep in mind that e-mail is always lower than direct mail.  It is, however, still profitable as there are no printing or postage charges.  Too, seldom will an email campaign yield “monster” gifts, as the largest we have seen were between $1000 – $2000 each.  Keeping this all in mind should allow you to ensure that your expectations are within the parameters of not only possibility but probability, allowing you to view the results with realistic insight.

Just as in any mode of fundraising, you must remember that “people give to people” more than organizations.  As a result, you want your e-mail to come from your chief fundraiser, such as your CEO or pastor.  Have the email look like a letter and be personalized.  “Dear Fred” goes a lot farther than “Dear Friend.”

To “enhance the chance” of filling your coffers via an email campaign, you need a substantial e-mail list.  As a result, you may need to go an E-Mail Marketing Company and spend some money to help bolster your list.  Do know that a really small list can be cost prohibitive for using HTML, and you may want to employ TEXT as a result.

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5 Steps In Getting Your Business Found In Local Internet Searches

Local Internet SearchesIn the day and age that we live one thing is as true as it ever was – – it doesn’t matter how good you are or how competitive your prices are if no one knows about you!  As a result, the age-old challenge of making sure that potential clients find you continues to rage on.  Currently, however, the secret to achieving this goal no longer revolves around the yellow pagesbillboards nor, to some extent, even radio and TV advertising.  Rather, the key, the “secret” if you would, to marketing success pretty much revolves around the Internet and Social Media!

This realm can, without a doubt, be over-whelming to the average businessman.  While volumes and volumes have been written on this topic, there are five “golden nuggets’ that will at least give you a “jump-start” in the Marketing World of the 21st Century!

1. CREATE A LOCAL PRESENCE ON THE BIG THREE SEARCH ENGINES – These are, of course, GOOGLE PLACES, YAHOO LOCAL, and BING LOCAL (BUSINESS PORTAL).

2. GET LISTED IN AS MANY LOCAL DIRECTORIES AS POSSIBLE – These can run the gamut from “Angie’s List” to “Hot Frog” and includes things like:

  • superpages.com
  • kudzu.com
  • yellowpages.com
  • local.com
  • yelp.com
  • citysearch.com
  • myhuckleberry.com
  • company.com
  • ​showmelocal.com
  • ezlocal.com

3. CREATE YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA PROFILES – Including Company Accounts (not personal) in  FOURSQUARE, FACEBOOK, TWITTER, LINKED IN and YOU TUBE.

4. ENCOURAGE CLIENTS TO WRITE AND POST POSITIVE REVIEW IN GOOGLE PLACES (and YAHOO AND BING) and LOCAL DIRECTORIES such as ANGIE’S LIST  – There are several excellent ways to accomplish this.

5. PURSUE SEARCH ENGINE RANKING ON YOUR TARGETED LOCAL KEYWORDS  – Example:  Plumber – Dallas – Texas

As you can imagine, there are numerous steps necessary to accomplish the above steps, and, to learn what they are, go to Pathmaker Marketing.

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E-mail Fundraising Strategies

E-mail Fundraising StrategiesIt is obvious that any successful endeavor is the result of someone developing and implementing a specific, successful strategy.  Email Fundraising is no exception.  Any e-mail marketing professional worth their salt knows this to be true.  And, a real e-mail marketing specialist will tell you that there are actually five strategies that you can employ to ensure that your email marketing program is, in fact, a successful one.

  1. E-MAILS TIED TO CURRENT EVENTS – This is pretty self-explanatory.  What you need to do is keep abreast with the news and develops an email campaign that revolves around what is transpiring.  This, of course, is dependent on the fact that your cause is one that is news worthy.  A good example of this might be if you are part of a Tornado Relief Fund.  During Tornado Season there are ample news stories for you to mount a most effective e-mail program around.
  2. MONTHLY “THEMED” E-MAIL CAMPAIGNS – Virtually every month has a holiday or event that you can “build” an e-mail fundraising campaign around.  For example, May lends itself to two causes:  Unwed Mothers and Veterans.  Mother’s Day allows you to touch people’s heartstrings regarding those moms who have no one to help care for them and their needs, and Memorial Day is a “natural” for seeking aid for our War Veterans.
  3. DIRECT MAIL/E-MAIL COMBO – E-Mail Marketing Firms will tell you that the advent of an email marketing campaign should not be the demise of other fundraisers that have worked for you in the past.  In this instance, you should come up with a Direct Mail offer and send it out.  Then, some seven to ten days later you follow up with an e-mail version of the same offer.  Together these allow you to really enhance the chance of success of your fundraising efforts.
  4. MEDIA/E-MAIL COMBO – Again, you are utilizing more than one method to supplement your fundraising efforts.  In this situation, you make your offer on either the Radio or TV.  Then, you follow up later that same day with an e-mail that re-enforces your initial offer.  This should not be a “Current Event” driven email but, rather, be centered on a pre-conceived offer that you present.
  5. “STAND ALONE” E-MAIL FUNDRAISING CAMPAIGN – Here, you want to make an offer that is totally exclusive to the e-mail you send.  To make these most effective, it is wise to have a time limit in which recipients must respond to benefit from your offer. Remember, all such offers should revolve around and be related to the cause you are trying to raise funds for.

If you find all of this a little overwhelming, you may want to contact a Professional E-Mail Marketing Service like PATHMAKER MARKETING LLC to assist you with your email marketing undertakings.  An e-mail marketing company of long standing, we not only knows how to implement these five strategies; we also have a track record of success that you will find most impressive!

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Animated Emails

Animated EmailMake no mistake about it, we do live in an entertaining world!  And, whatever entertains us the most is going to get our attention.  That is why the talented e-mail marketing experts at Pathmaker Marketing LLC stand ready to help you design and employ a major technological breakthrough – – Animated E-Mails!

One of the main things that you need to know, and keep in mind, regarding Animated E-mails is the fact that the methods used to generate Animation on a Web page are restricted for an E-Mail.  For example, websites can use FLASH, JAVA and a variety of other technologies.  With E-Mails, however, the major technology is Animated Gifs.

Most professional email marketing services will tell you that Animated Gifs is “old school,” and has been around for quite some time.  Like most forms of technology, there are a number of people around who dabble in this particular medium without being really proficient in it.  That’s where Pathmaker Marketing LLC , an email marketing firm, comes in— as they are  qualified, experienced, and immensely prolific!

While Animated Gifs is “the way to go,” it is not without its restrictions.  For example, a Gif with a lot of frames creates a large file, which causes the E-Mail to load slowly.  In a day when two seconds seems like an eternity, a slow opening E-Mail runs the risk of immediate deletion.  Too, while most E-Mail Boxes will display Animated Gifsjust fine, Outlook 7 is an exception.

Still, within these parameters creativity can abound.  Check out the addresses below to see some of the better Animated Gifs currently on the Internet:

                                    http://stylecampaign.com/blog/?p=72

                                    http://stylecampaign.com/blog/?p=96

Pathmaker Marketing LLC recently accepted the challenge of something totally spectacular – – including a countdown within a client’s E-Mails!  The process began by creating a countdown for their Website (for an example of a countdown on a Website go to http://www.flashxml.net/countdown.html).  With a visual style to work with we were able to develop animation for their E-Mails, and were able to dovetail it with their Website countdown (http://jerusalemprayerteam.org/email/archive/0818.asp). While it appears that the countdown is actually taking place in the E-Mail, this is an illusion that we created, giving only the impression of a countdown.  This was accomplished by using only fifty-three (53) frames, thus making it a manageable size.

To learn how, exactly, you and your Company can benefit from an Animated E-Mail Program prepared by an email marketing specialist you need to contact Pathmaker Marketing LLC to schedule a private phone conversation as quickly as possible.  After all, you want to entertain everyone you send E-Mails to!

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ESPs – Email Service Providers

Email ProviderIf your goal is to achieve success on the Internet by becoming a viable email Marketing Firm, you need to have at least a working knowledge of ESPs, and be able to decide which one, exactly, will serve your needs best.  That’s why email Marketing Specialists  have done the leg-work to identify and research the various ESPs to determine which one will serve you best.

Unbeknownst to many, ESPs fall into three levels:  Entry, Mid, and Elite.  Following is a sampling of ESPs in each category:

ESP Sampling per Category
 Entry     Mid  Elite
iContact Convio Exec Target
Emma Vertical Response Bronto
Lyris
Com F5

Typically, unless your Mailing List exceeds 10,000 you need not go above the “Entry” Level.  With this information in mind, email marketing experts can evaluate your needs and help you determine which ESP would be best foryou!  If you are involved in Professional email Marketing, choosing the correct ESP is a must!

 Make no mistake about it, in this day and age you need to get into an ESP if you haven’t already done so, and many direct mail marketing firms, like Pathmaker Marketing LLC, stand ready to help you select the one best suited for your needs.  If you are already in one, they can help maximize its use to increase your level of success!

To learn how, exactly, you can involve yourself with the ESP that will best meet your needs, you need to contact an email marketing professional like those at Pathmaker Marketing LLC to schedule a private phone conversation as quickly as possible. After all, reaching people via the proper ESP is an important step in ensuring email Marketing success, and can be easily accomplished with the help of an email marketing company like Pathmaker Marketing LLC! If your goal is to achieve success on the Internet by becoming a viable email Marketing Firm, you need to have at least a working knowledge of ESPs, and be able to decide which one, exactly, will serve your needs best.  That’s why email Marketing Specialists  have done the leg-work to identify and research the various ESPs to determine which one will serve you best.

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Email Fundraising Concepts

e-mail fundraisingIt is obvious that the 21st Century is making each and every one of us re-evaluate the way we do things.  This is as true for Churches and Non-Profits as it is for Businesses.  One of the most prominent undertakings of a 501 (c) (3) is Fundraising, and there are many e-mail marketing companies who are offering their services to assist with this challenge.  In fact, Randall Mains, CEO of Pathmaker Marketing, LLC, a true email marketing specialist, has had immense success with his clients in doing just that, having raised well over a million dollars for them in the past four-plus years!

When conferring with Pathmaker Marketing, or any professional email marketing service, they will advise you that there are several important email fundraising concepts, which deals predominantly with “testing”  to ensuring that your e-mail fundraising endeavor is, in fact, a successful one.  Following is brief descriptions of each of these, to help you better understand the email marketing expert’s approach to e-mail fundraising.

DEVELOP YOUR E-MAIL STRATEGIES – Basically there are five strategies that you can employ, which include:

  1. E-Mail Tied to Current Events
  2. Monthly “Themed” E-Mail Campaigns
  3. Direct Mail/E-Mail Combo
  4. Media/E-Mail Combo
  5. “Stand Alone” E-Mail Fundraising Campaign

“SUBJECT LINE” TESTING – This process finds you mailing the exact same email, but changing what you write in the subject line.  As you experiment with these, you will find that one subject line may get more attention, and a better reaction, than another one that you use.

“SPLIT” TESTING – In this instance you try different “creative angles” to see which works best. This might include varying the copy that you use, or the photos.  Obviously, you will send out several simultaneously to determine what the results are.

“CLICK THROUGH RATE” TESTING – Typically, in each e-mail the recipient will have several ways to “click through” to support your cause.  This can either take place via a “Banner, “Learn More,” or an “Action Button.”  What you will eventually do, of course, is concentrate on “Click through Optimization.”

LANDING PAGE OPTIMIZATION – This may be, perhaps, the greatest “bug-a-boo” for email fundraisers.  Often, people have an excellent “click through” rate, but no one bothers to donate!  As a result, the conclusion drawn, albeit an erroneous one is that e-mail fundraising doesn’t work.  The reality is, it is the landing page that is “broken” and needs repairing, and that is where landing page optimization comes in!

It is, of course, possible that all of this may seem a little overwhelming, especially the landing page optimization concept.  That is why that you may find it most beneficial to contact an email marketing professional like Randall Mains and his e-mail marketing firm, Pathmaker Marketing.  They can assist you by explaining the process in greater detail, and implementing the programs as well!

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E-Mail Marketing 101: Getting Started

E-Mail MarketingIf yours is an enterprise that can be considered “B to C” – Business to Consumer – then E-mail Marketing is something that you not only need to be aware of, but need to be participating in. This is especially true if “coupons,” or special offers/special events serves a vital role in your Marketing Program. With Restaurants and certain Retail Shops, E-Mail Marketing is pretty apt to be your ticket to “Marketing Paradise.” It can work well for churches as well!

 In order to explain the process in detail, let’s use a Restaurant and a church as our examples as to how the program works. To begin with, we need to realize that there are two major challenges in implementing an effective E-Mail Marketing ProgramBuilding your contact list and coming up with viable offers to send to your list. The key to building your list is that you have to provide a reason for people to join. In the case of the Restaurant, you might offer a “2 for 1” coupon, or a “20% Off” your next order when they sign up. You provide patrons the opportunity to enroll while they are in your establishment, and at that time you explain that future coupons will be forthcoming when they “enroll” with you.  A Church might offer a free White Paper on Prayer or How to Enjoy Better Family Life for signing up.

      Once you have a list to work with, you can start your E-Mail Marketing Program. You might send out coupons for Karaoke Night, or for Holiday Discounts, or maybe even to join you for Monday Night Football. It is important to remember that an E-Mail Marketing Program is primarily to provide your business with “spikes,” corresponding to the event or holiday. Inasmuch as E-Mails tend to have a short “shelf life,” these are good for “short term” promotions.

Churches might want to offer an invitation to a special Holiday Service or even a “Movie Night” or special musical presentation.  Again, the idea is to get people into the church so that you can determine what their needs are and how you can help meet those needs.

      Regardless of the type of business you own and/or are promoting, there are several important facts you need to keep in mind when building your E-Mail Program. Most importantly, perhaps, is the fact that you will want to design your coupons in HTML. This not only allows you to develop and forward an “attractive” coupon that will render properly, it also provides you with the means to “track” your E-Mails, allowing you to know how many of them are being opened and even how many recipients are “clicking through.”

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E Welcome Series

ewelcome seriesProper Business Etiquette is as much a part of the business world today as it ever was, and that is just as true in regard to the Internet as any other business aspect! Fortunately, the email marketing experts at Pathmaker Marketing LLC are the virtual Emily Posts of Internet Etiquette! And, we stand ready to help ensure that anyone who visits your website is treated appropriately, wooing them back as not only interested parties but as actual clients!

As you have undoubtedly already surmised, you want to be sure to properly respond when someone visits your Website. For example, if they take the time to fill out a form or survey, it would behoove you to send an e-mail thanking them, and also provide them with a special gift! Your “thank you” e-mail should be something that is both eye-catching and memorable. With such an e-mail you will indicate to the recipient that, though you don’t know them yet, they are already important to you!

The “special gift” can be a downloadable White Paper that elaborates on how you and your company can assist them. This White Paper should not only elaborate on the services/products you offer, but also convince the reader at the very least they should give you and your company a closer look!

Contact with your “visitor,” however, should not end there! Your first follow up to your initial contact should probably come in the form of a coupon for their first order. This could be either a “percent off,” or perhaps a free gift with the purchase of an established amount on their first order.

How many contacts should you make?  An email marketing specialist will advise you to always keep in mind that the basic concept in using the Welcome Series is to get beyond the “Acquaintance Stage” and get people “up to speed” in regard to what you do and who you are! Your goal is to get people involved with your company as soon as possible and as much as possible!

Keeping in mind that this program is to help you develop a relationship with your customers, the “Welcome Series” program works equally well with Businesses and Charitable Organizations. In either case, this program does, in fact, get people up to speed in regard to what you do and who you are!

Perhaps the best way to envision what the Welcome Series helps you accomplish is through the use of the Development World’s “Pyramid Model.” In that particular Model, the “base” is where most people who contact your company/organization are located. The more involved they become with you, the further they “move up” the Pyramid. The goal, of course, is to get them to the very pinnacle of the Pyramid, where you have become an integral part of their world!

You may have noted that many companies and/or organizations already have a “Welcome Series” that they use via the U.S. Mail. With our experience and expertisePathmaker Marketing LLC can coordinate the two rather easily. With the transition of our world to the electronic age, this might be an excellent way to make the transition from “snail mail” to “e-mail!

To learn how, exactly, you and your Company can benefit from an E-Welcome Program you will want to contact an email marketing firm sooner rather than later! After all, you want everyone to reach the pinnacle of your Pyramid!

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Top 10 Outreach Ideas for the Internet-Autoresponders

10. Creating an Auto-responder Spiritual Campaign is Our 10th of Ten Top Church Outreach Ideas for the Internet.

One successful example of this church outreach strategy is the Gregory Dickow´s From the Inside Out program. Through his ministry´s website, he was able to ask thousands of people to “fast from wrong thinking” with him for forty days. Between his pulpit, TV show, and the 40 subsequent inspirational emails that people received once each day, over 100,000 people were participating and committed to setting aside negative thoughts and putting on Biblical, right thinking in regard to their everyday lives.

Since then, he has used the email auto-responder process to launch two more successful fast from wrong thinking campaigns, and thousands more people have taken part.  As far as church outreach ideas go, the autoresponder campaign is one of the best. It has high ministerial impact, runs automatically year round, and can be a subtantial effective internet marketing tool for your church.

For a free demo on how to install a Spiritual Campaign or church outreach with Autoresponders, contact Pathmaker at 623-322-3334.

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