Email Advocacy

Email advocacy is an essential part of any campaign. It’s one of the best and easiest ways for you to communicate directly with supporters. Whether your goal is increasing awareness or building engagement, email advocacy has many benefits.

Email advocacy is an essential part of any campaign. It’s one of the best and easiest ways for you to communicate directly with supporters. Whether your goal is increasing awareness or building engagement, email advocacy has many benefits.

However, it’s challenging to craft the perfect emails that achieve your campaign goals. To see positive results from your email advocacy campaigns, your messages have to be compelling and easy to read. Here are six tips to help you maximize email engagement and write amazing emails.

Define Your Goals.

With any strategy, you have to know what you want to achieve before you start. Figure out what you want your email advocacy to accomplish and how you’ll measure your success.

Are you trying to raise awareness about a specific issue? Do you want to increase engagement? Are you asking for donations?

Clearly define your goals and build your email advocacy strategy on top of them. Knowing what you want to achieve helps you figure out how to achieve it. With your end goal in mind, you can tailor your strategy to reach it.

Try to find metrics to measure your success along the way. For example, if you are asking for donations, figure out how much money you want to raise at each level of the campaign. 

You need to have a way to measure your campaign’s effectiveness and see how well you’re doing. If your campaign is performing well, you can continue going and build to your goal. If not, you can find out where you can improve and focus on that area.

Segment your Audiences

Getting the right email to the right person at the right time is one of the most important keys to engaging people with your emails. Luckily, NationBuilder allows you to use tags, lists, GIS, and filters for your nation of supporters so you can segment and target emails to the people who want them most!

That means that you won't have to send email blasts to everyone on your list at once.

This kind of segmentation is what drives engagement, increases open rates and click-through rates, and decreases the number of opt-outs.

Write an Engaging Subject Line.

You only have a fraction of a second to get people to open their emails. When someone is scanning through their inbox, you want their eyes to catch on your email. That’s why your subject line needs to be engaging.

Keep it short and sweet. Clearly outline what the email content is about and try to stay under 40 characters. 

Avoid too many capital letters or exclamation marks, along with spam-like words or phrases. You want your email to reach their inbox, not their spam folder.

The actual content of the subject line should be relevant to the email’s message. Instilling a sense of urgency or a fear of a consequence in your recipient can encourage them to open the email. However, don’t go overboard with it.

Have a Clear Call-to-Action.

Every email should have a straightforward call-to-action in it. Specify exactly what you want the recipient to do once they’ve finished reading the email and make it easy for them to complete the action.

If it’s something they can do online immediately, include links. Whether those links are to your website, another site, a petition, or a donation page, having the link directly in front of them will increase the chances they complete the action.

Make sure that everyone who reads your email walks away knowing what they are expected to do afterward. Keep your CTAs clear, concise, and easily doable. With embedded buttons, paths, and auto-responses, NationBuilder makes it easy to engage your supporters with calls-to-action.


Figuring out how to perfect your email advocacy includes testing. The most common type of email test is A/B testing, which splits recipients into two groups. Each group receives a different version of the same email, and the sender measures which version of the email saw more success.

A/B tests are great for seeing the impact of small choices. For example, changing a few words in your subject line can affect how many recipients open your email.

You can then use the results from the A/B test to create more targeted emails designed to increase engagement. Knowing what your audience responds to helps you tailor your messages to them. NationBuilder natively allows you to run A/B tests on your emails!

Focus on Engagement.

While numbers are great, the goal of email advocacy is not to increase numbers. It’s to increase engagement. Focus on encouraging action rather than building up the number of supporters.

If you have a huge audience that doesn’t participate, you won’t achieve nearly as much as you would with a smaller, incredibly engaged audience. Craft your emails with engagement as the primary goal and focus on results over numbers and don't be afraid to cull your email list.

With NationBuilder filters, its easy to distinguish your most engaged supporters!

Optimize Emails for Mobile.

Most people check their email on their phones. That means that even if someone opens your email, they aren’t likely to stay and read it if it’s not optimized for mobile.

Make sure that, no matter what device a recipient is on, your email is readable and appealing. You want your audience to stick around, read your email, and complete your call-to-action. They aren’t going to do that if they can’t even read your message. 

If you're using a NationBuilder website, your emails and websites are already optimized for mobile devices!


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