Nonprofits aren’t in the business of selling products or services. But they still need a robust marketing and communications strategy.
Email marketing is one of the most potent tools for efficient communication. It provides a cost-effective means to execute personalized and targeted campaigns.
Through emails, nonprofits can easily share updates and success stories with their audience. And their measurable impact paves the way for truly effective strategies.
But determining the best email marketing platform for nonprofits isn’t a one-size-fits-all scenario. It hinges on your specific needs.
In this article, we’ve handpicked the top eight nonprofit email marketing software for your consideration. We’ll explore key features, integration capabilities, and pricing structures.
Understanding nonprofits' unique needs
Marketing is challenging, even for the most seasoned professionals. But for nonprofit organizations, the challenge is heightened. They often face unique hurdles due to limited resources, and a more niche audience.
Recognizing these challenges is a crucial step in formulating a successful marketing strategy. Let’s explore and comprehend the distinct needs of nonprofits at length.
Effective communication is essential for both nonprofits and for-profit brands. However, the optimal strategies for each exhibit slight variations. Here are some defining characteristics and guidelines for nonprofit communications:
- Messaging focus: Nonprofit communication revolves around the organization’s mission. It typically emphasizes values, impact, and the cause. This is achieved through techniques like good storytelling and imagery to elicit emotion.
- Target audience: Nonprofits engage with a diverse range of stakeholders. These may include donors, volunteers, beneficiaries, and community members. Crafting messages that resonate with each group is essential for effective communication.
- Tone and style: The tone of nonprofit communications is characterized by a heartfelt approach. Additionally, the style is informal, conversational, and relatable. This helps foster a sense of community and shared values.
To achieve your communication goals, establish clear and measurable objectives. This guarantees focused and mission-aligned messaging for your nonprofit.
Begin by identifying the overarching goals, both short-term and long-term. Ensure that communication objectives align with these goals, contributing to your nonprofit’s success.
One defining characteristic of nonprofits is their often limited financial resources. Nonprofits must adopt cost-effective communication strategies to deliver a substantial return on investment.
This includes leveraging digital platforms, exploring collaborations, and harnessing the power of volunteers. Email marketing, specifically, is a low-cost method. It proves highly effective for delivering targeted messages to a specific audience.
To leverage the full potential of email marketing for charities and other nonprofits, here are some cost-effective strategies:
- Marketing automation for nonprofits: Use automation tools to schedule donation receipts, thank-you emails, and updates. Automation streamlines communication processes, saving time and resources.
- Leverage segmentation: Segment your email list based on stakeholder or engagement levels. Targeted messages can improve response rates and stakeholder activity. Moreover, you will send fewer emails and pay less for more effective messages.
- Optimize user-generated content for social proof: Encourage donors and volunteers to share their experiences and testimonials. Incorporate this into your emails to add authenticity and save costs on visuals.
A limited budget doesn’t have to equate to a diminished impact. Strategic planning and mindful resource use can help maximize impact.
Audience engagement tactics
Audience engagement is vital for nonprofits seeking sustained support. It thrives on education, community-building, and creating participation opportunities.
Consider these email marketing tactics for doing so:
- Storytelling initiatives: Share impactful stories to create emotional connections and inspire engagement.
- Interactive campaigns: Create engaging contests, polls, or challenges for audience participation.
- Online events and webinars: Host virtual events and webinars for interactive discussions.
- Gamification: Incorporate gamification elements, like challenges or rewards, for active participation.
- Impact reports: Share regular impact reports and updates for transparency and engagement.
- Celebrate milestones: Acknowledge and celebrate milestones to engage and appreciate your audience.
Monitoring various metrics allows you to assess the success of your audience engagement. Metrics may include the number of lives impacted, funds raised, and community involvement.
This approach allows you to refine effective strategies for your organization over time.
Top email marketing platforms for nonprofits
Here’s a collection of the eight best email marketing platforms for nonprofits. These platforms offer essential features for list building, automation, and targeted content delivery.
They can enhance your nonprofit’s outreach, attracting more donations, volunteers, and awareness. Moreover, some platforms offer nonprofits discounts of up to 50% off regular plans.
Let’s dive in.
1. Mailchimp for nonprofits
Image via Mailchimp
Mailchimp is touted as one of the best email marketing platforms for nonprofits, and for good reason. For starters, its user-friendly interface is beneficial for users of all levels.
Mailchimp’s email editor is quick and robust, making campaign creation straightforward. Moreover, the email builder comes with unique features such as surveys and dynamic content blocks, helping you personalize email content.
Using these, for instance, you can create surveys to understand your contacts’ interests. Consequently, you can customize fundraisers, volunteer opportunities, or merchandise tailored to their preferences.
When it comes to time-saving features, Mailchimp offers several pre-built automated journeys. For nonprofits with diverse donor bases, it simplifies processes with segmentation capabilities.
Depending on the plan you’re signed up for, there are support options available. Unfortunately, free plan users only get email support for the initial 30 days. If you need support beyond this period, exploring Mailchimp alternatives for nonprofits is recommended.
That said, an added benefit of Mailchimp is that it goes beyond email marketing. The platform integrates seamlessly with Facebook ads and Google ads. Additionally, it syncs with nonprofit CRMs like Keela and Kindful. You may also send SMS to email recipients who didn’t open your email.
- Email template library: 100+ customizable professional templates to align with your organization’s identity.
- Advanced automation: 70+ pre-built automation templates, and robust segmenting, scheduling, and design tools.
- Landing pages: A comprehensive landing builder with nine templates.
- Integrations: Over 300 integrations, categorized for easy selection.
- Comprehensive analytics: Generate various kinds of reports, including click maps and heat maps.
Mailchimp’s entry-level paid plan begins at $13 per month. It lets you send up to 5,000 emails to 500 contacts. It also provides segmentation, automation capabilities, and basic analytics.
Is Mailchimp free for nonprofits?
While not entirely free for nonprofits, Mailchimp offers a 30-day trial for Essentials and Standard plans.
There’s also a free plan available. While it has a cap of 500 contacts and 1,000 monthly emails, it still grants access to decent features.
Mailchimp’s non-profit pricing also extends a 15% discount to eligible organizations.
2. Constant Contact’s nonprofit solution
Image via Constant Contact
Constant Contact has an impressive email deliverability rate. This feature makes it one of the best email marketing platforms for nonprofits.
The platform features an easy-to-use email builder and a template library. However, some templates may appear a bit outdated. Similarly, automation features 15 suggested templates.
While segmentation capabilities are basic, they should meet the needs of a nonprofit. You can create segments based on contact details, email activity, tags, and more.
Notably, the platform facilitates sending RSVP-enabled email invitations. This streamlines responses to fundraisers and volunteer events.
Additionally, Constant Contact offers unique event marketing functionality. This allows you to host and promote charity fundraisers, webinars, and more.
- Drag-and-drop editor: Comes with a huge image library and tools like events, polls, and RSVP.
- Extensive knowledge base: Access a wealth of information through downloadable PDF guides. These cover platform usage, email marketing tips, and more.
- Seamless integrations: Connect with DonorPerfect for fundraising support. Utilize Shopify for ecommerce, and Zapier for versatile integration options.
- Efficient event management: Leverage Constant Contact for guest tracking, payment acceptance, and sending event reminders.
- Additional functionality: There’s an optional SMS add-on for U.S. users. All users can access Facebook ads and Google ads. Additionally, there are integrations with Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
Paid plans start at $12 per month, offering features for up to 5,000 emails and 500 contacts. This base plan provides essential tools, a marketing CRM, and event marketing capabilities. Unfortunately, segmentation is notably absent.
Is Constant Contact free for nonprofits?
Constant Contact lacks a free plan. However, it offers a limited 60-day trial to test out the platform.
Moreover, there’s a special Constant Contact pricing for nonprofits. This includes a 20% discount for a 6-month plan and a 30% discount for a 12-month plan.
3. Brevo for charitable organizations
Image via Brevo
Brevo stands out as an all-in-one marketing platform. It seamlessly integrates email marketing, SMS, push notifications, and live chat.
Brevo is equipped with an intuitive email builder and approximately 40 templates. Moreover, there are extensive personalization options available. These cover attributes such as name, gender, and contact details.
Brevo boasts pre-built workflows and the option to integrate SMS and push notifications. The ‘Best Time’ feature lets you send emails at optimal times based on past performance.
Another distinctive feature is its provision of business phone numbers. This is particularly useful for nonprofits engaging donors through phone calls.
As for email list management for nonprofits, Brevo’s features are somewhat weak. And while segmentation is decent, it barely competes with platforms like Mailchimp.
Regarding special pricing, nonprofits receive a 15% discount with the Enterprise plan. This could be limiting for small organizations with tighter budgets.
- Email personalization: Easily personalize campaigns with names, surnames, and additional attributes.
- Omnichannel marketing: Engage your audience with WhatsApp, SMS, and live chat. You can also use Facebook ads and international calls.
- A/B testing: Simultaneously test two email campaigns to determine which performs better.
- Powerful automation: Leverage pre-built workflows, conditions, and integrated SMS/push notifications.
The entry-level paid plan begins at $25 per month, allowing you to send 20,000 emails monthly. Additionally, it provides basic reporting, personalization, email editor, and phone features.
Is Brevo free for nonprofits?
Brevo has a free plan for all, which offers up to 300 emails per day. It includes features like email templates, marketing automation, SMS, and push notifications. For smaller nonprofits, this is a good option to get started with.
Moreover, nonprofits can enjoy a 15% discount, but only on the enterprise-level BrevoPlus plan.
4. Moosend for nonprofits
Image via Moosend
Moosend emerges as the best email marketing platform for nonprofits on a budget.
The platform also stands out for its ease of use. It features an intuitive drag-and-drop editor and a variety of templates. Content blocks like timers and videos further enhance engagement.
Moosend’s easy-to-implement automation becomes a game-changer for nonprofits with limited human resources. Send personalized emails based on specific actions. This includes activities like new subscriptions or donations. What’s more, these automation features are available for as low as $9 a month.
With Moosend, you can segment your audience, whether volunteers, donors, or potential supporters. Additionally, the platform provides in-depth, real-time analytics that should suffice most nonprofit needs.
However, it’s important to note that there’s no free plan available. Moreover, the platform isn’t compatible with any other marketing channels. The tool may be worth considering if your needs are limited to email marketing.
- Powerful automation: Access a variety of triggers and actions. This includes multi-trigger and conditional flows.
- Affordability: Enjoy features like automation, content blocks, and heatmap analytics for $9/month.
- Unlimited emails: Moosend’s paid plans and free trial provide unlimited monthly emails. This makes it a great mass email service for nonprofits.
- RSS campaigns: Moosend seamlessly connects to your website’s RSS feed. It generates new campaigns automatically when you publish new blog content.
- List building: Utilize a range of templates for both signup forms and landing pages.
Paid plans start at $9/month. The base plan offers access to nearly all platform features, including unlimited emails.
Is Moosend free for nonprofits?
Moosend doesn’t provide free email marketing for nonprofits. However, a 30-day free trial is available, granting access to most features.
Nonprofits can also secure a 25% discount by reaching out to the sales/support team.
5. GetResponse: A versatile choice for nonprofits
Image via GetResponse
Consider GetResponse as another viable email marketing software for nonprofits. This platform is pretty much an all-rounder.
Naturally, it allows you to create engaging emails through its drag-and-drop builder. But it also facilitates marketing to potential donors via Facebook and Google ads. Additionally, it offers SMS functionality and web push notifications.
As if that wasn’t enough, GetResponse also excels in list building. It allows you to create signup forms and landing pages in minutes.
The platform’s automation features are robust, featuring 43 pre-built workflows. But note that many of them are ecommerce-focused. You can also set up autoresponders to boost awareness and boost donations.
GetResponse certainly doesn’t have the lowest pricing. That said, it values nonprofits and NGOs by offering a 50% discount on regular pricing.
- Robust automation: GetResponse offers several pre-built workflows, conditions, and tags. You can also incorporate push notifications.
- Powerful A/B testing: Enjoy the power of split testing for both subject lines and email content.
- Round-the-clock support: All paid plan users benefit from 24/7 email and live chat support.
- Conversion funnel integration: You can construct comprehensive funnels within GetResponse. This can help you guide users from awareness to donation, all in one cohesive platform.
- All-in-one solution: GetResponse features SMS marketing, push notifications, and Google/Facebook ads. It also provides website and landing page builders.
GetResponse offers three paid plans, starting at $19/month for up to 1,000 contacts. Yet, this plan has some limitations, particularly regarding automation capabilities.
Is GetResponse free for nonprofits?
GetResponse provides a 30-day trial with premium features. It also provides a free plan allowing 2,500 monthly emails to 500 contacts. Additionally, you get features like a website builder, signup forms, and landing pages.
Nonprofits enjoy a 50% discount on standard pricing by displaying the GetResponse logo on their website.
6. MailerLite for nonprofits
Image via MailerLite
The best email service for nonprofits seeking affordability is undoubtedly MailerLite. What’s more, the platform boasts one of the best email editors. It offers extensive styling choices, 90 templates, and elements like surveys and quizzes.
The platform boasts one of the best email editors. It offers extensive styling choices, and elements like surveys and quizzes.
One standout feature of MailerLite is its capability to resend emails to non-openers. The platform also supports automation with a visual workflow editor. This lets nonprofits create welcome series, follow-up sequences, and automated fundraising email campaigns.
For list building, MailerLite offers signup forms and landing pages. These are complemented by customizable templates. While lacking pre-built segments, MailerLite allows segmentation based on interests, email engagement, etc.
Notably, the platform accommodates nonprofits selling digital products. This provides a valuable avenue for fundraising. Additionally, its integration with Stripe allows seamless processing of online payments. This includes handling recurring donations.
- User-friendly design: MailerLite boasts an easy-to-navigate interface with ample support.
- Professional templates: Access a variety of templates for emails, signup forms, and landing pages.
- Sell digital products: Easily monetize your nonprofit’s digital assets like art and ebooks.
- Dynamic emails: Customize email content based on subscriber characteristics. For example, you can display a thank-you message to recent donors.
MailerLite’s pricing begins at $10 per month. This plan offers extensive features, including dynamic emails, automation, and A/B testing.
Is MailerLite free for nonprofits?
Unfortunately not. But MailerLite provides a 30-day free trial and a free plan with 12,000 monthly email sends. However, the free plan lacks essential features like templates, dynamic emails, and certain automation triggers.
Nonprofit organizations can enjoy a 30% discount on MailerLite’s paid plans.
7. HubSpot for nonprofits
Image via HubSpot
HubSpot is an all-in-one inbound marketing platform ideal for growing nonprofits. In fact, it partners with 4,000+ nonprofits globally.
HubSpot’s user-friendly drag-and-drop email editor makes crafting emails a breeze. It also comes with some templates, although their design is rather basic.
That said, HubSpot boasts a high email deliverability rate.
HubSpot also allows you to design signup forms, landing pages, and entire websites. It provides effective list segmentation capabilities. This lets you create lists based on many criteria, from age to recent content downloads.
As for A/B testing, HubSpot features strong capabilities. This way, you can experiment with different subject lines, CTAs, and visuals.
Notably, registered nonprofit organizations can benefit from a 40% discount on HubSpot. However, there’s a catch here. This discount applies only to the Professional or Enterprise Tier HubSpot products. These cost $890 and $3,600 per month, respectively.
This price may be justified if you need a built-in CRM solution. But otherwise, it’s a pretty expensive tool.
- A/B testing: HubSpot enables A/B testing for various email elements, such as subject lines, CTAs, and images.
- Comprehensive analytics: Monitor email trends, delivery rates, and engagement to enhance campaign performance.
- CRM: HubSpot provides a robust CRM to create detailed profiles of contacts. These could cover personal information, communications, and website interactions.
- Landing pages: Special content blocks such as image sliders and language switchers enhance page content.
HubSpot’s Starter plan begins at $20 per month. It offers essential tools to attract, engage, and convert leads, with certain limitations.
Is HubSpot free for nonprofits?
The platform provides various free tools for you to explore before opting for a paid plan. This includes 2,000 monthly sends, one automated action, five email templates, and more.
Nonprofits get a 40% discount, which only applies to Professional or Enterprise Tier products.
8. VerticalResponse for nonprofits
Image via VerticalResponse
VerticalResponse is one of the best email marketing software for nonprofits. This is owing to its generous sending limit of 10,000 free emails per month. Depending on your nonprofit’s size, you might not even need to upgrade to a paid plan.
VerticalResponse provides responsive email templates, including a dedicated category for nonprofits. It also offers a user-friendly editor with pre-formatted content blocks.
One of its most unique features is the Test Kit. This allows you to check email appearances on various devices, and scan for broken links.
Now, let’s move on to its automation features. VerticalResponse lets you trigger emails based on time intervals and subscriber behavior. You can also set up autoresponders easily.
The platform supports signup forms and landing pages, offering templates for both. Creating surveys is pretty easy, and real-time results enable quick market research.
Finally, VerticalResponse offers comprehensive analytics, including geolocation reports, comparison reports, and heatmaps.
- Powerful reporting: Access various reports with the Pro plan. It includes device and browser statistics.
- Survey creation: Effortlessly craft and distribute an unlimited number of surveys.
- Intuitive email builder: The email builder is equipped with preformatted content blocks and templates for nonprofits.
- Seamless integrations: Seamlessly connect VerticalResponse with various platforms. This includes integration with tools like Magento and Salesforce.
The Basic plan starts at $11 per month, allowing unlimited emails to 500 contacts. It also provides access to all core email marketing features.
Is VerticalResponse free for nonprofits?
Although VerticalResponse doesn’t offer free email marketing for nonprofits, it has a lot to offer. The platform provides users with a 60-day free trial with access to all core features.
Moreover, nonprofits receive 10,000 free monthly emails. And high-volume sender nonprofits can get a 15% discount on monthly plans.
Best email marketing platform for nonprofits: Wrap up
Engaging stakeholders is crucial for nonprofits, and email marketing is a proven method. Fortunately, many tools provide handy email builders, templates, audience segmentation, automated workflows, and beyond.
The added benefit is that many of these tools provide free plans or trials. This allows you to explore various platforms and identify what works best for you.
If and when you transition to a paid plan, be sure to explore discounts tailored for nonprofits.
Our team strives to be accurate and unbiased in reviewing email tools. However, we recognize that mistakes can happen, and it’s essential for us to stay up to date. If you come across any errors or things that need to be reviewed again, please let us know.