Great work! Someone subscribed to your email list!


This new subscriber is obviously interested in your organization and it is a shame not to capitalize on the one email that typically gets 60% more open rates than other promotional emails!

Now you’re wondering how to make the most out of this very important email…
Never fear, we are going to teach you step by step how to craft the perfect non-profit welcome email.

The welcome email consists of 5 parts.

  • The Subject Line
  • The Opening Paragraph
  • The Benefit Statement
  • The What’s Next
  • The P.S.

Let’s dive into how to master these steps…

1. The Subject Line

Don’t get fancy… The subject line should be straightforward and welcome the reader to your non-profit organization. You can create a bit of curiosity here by saying something like “Here’s what you can do…” or “Here’s what to expect”. The subscriber should have your organization fresh in their memory so keep it simple. (you should also send out a welcome email quickly after they subscribe).

“Welcome to [Name of Organization] Thanks for Being Here with Us…”

Here is Charity Water’s welcome email.  They do two things very well:

  • They show appreciation along with a visual.
  • They remind the person about their mission and that they are apart of it.


2. The Opening Paragraph

Open very personably. Make sure to write how you would greet someone in person. Introduce yourself, welcome them and thank them for signing up. Make it more personable by adding a name of the Executive Director or perhaps your head communications person.

This is an example of our first paragraph.

3. The Benefit Statement

The benefit statement should restate that they made the right decision by signing up. You should also include what they get for being a part of your email address. Do they get daily emails? Weekly emails? What content will you provide? Blog Posts? Organization Updates? Volunteer Opportunities?

Helpful tip: Stories connect. Try to make stories about how your organization impacts lives as part of your regular newsletter. Never assume the subscriber remembers why your organization is beneficial (they might not even remember signing up). Don’t talk down to them or be condescending but do refresh their memory.


Hope for Justice gets right to the point here:

  • They tell you what you will get (full stories of victims they are helping)
  • Plus added extras like events and invites only for subscribers

4. What to do now?

This section of your welcome email should highlight a few key items you want the subscriber to do. For us, it’s to whitelist our emails and connect on social media. We also offer our direct email if people have any questions at this point. As a non-profit, watching a video about your organization is a great place to start to get to know you. Ultimately, you want to keep the welcome email short but still detail enough information to get the subscriber to commit to a few things here, because a follow on social media and an email whitelist will increase your exposure that much more. Also, don’t forget to let your organization voice and personality shine here. This is our example below:

Toms does a great job here by keeping it really simple – plus they even let you set your preferences that way you are only getting relevant emails tailored to your specific needs.

5. The P.S.

Adding a P.S. Section is great to offer more information like your latest blog post or a bonus. We use this to hint at an upcoming email series. As a non-profit, you can use this to follow up with an onboarding series outlining your current projects and how to get involved or educational or inspiring posts or videos on your organization’s website.

According to the 2017 Giving Trends Report, 38% of people were inspired to attend a fundraising event through direct mail (more than any avenue of communication). From here, 44% of volunteers said they were first inspired to get involved from a fundraising event they attended. 

From the example above you can see how a donor moves down the funnel and becomes someone who is involved quite a bit with your organization, and that all started with an email. The welcome email generally has the highest open rate, so not including a special offer or unique opportunity for your subscribers would mean missing out on a tremendous opportunity to engage with your supporters further.

This is our example below:

You want to use follow up emails to further tell your organization’s story and help your new subscriber move from being an interested supporter to a repeat donor. If you implement these steps in your welcome email you are sure to capitalize on those high open rates and help people to stick around and support your organization.


If you are looking for a little more help in creating the perfect welcome email for non-profits download our template below. Just fill in the blanks with information about your organization and you’re done!



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