Maximizing Nonprofit Marketing Impact with Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud Account Engagement

In many cases, nonprofit organizations are tasked with achieving more with less, especially when it comes to marketing initiatives. Cutting through the noise to determine the best approach for your organization’s needs can be challenging.

Many nonprofits rely on marketing automation platforms to alleviate the burden of limited time, resources, or personnel for their marketing efforts.

However, the greatest challenge organizations encounter is not knowing where to begin or what the best practices are for marketing automation.

salesforce Marketing Cloud Account Engagement

Understanding Your Audience

Every successful marketing strategy begins with understanding your audience. Consider your donors and key stakeholders, then develop personas around them. This approach can assist in keeping your message aligned to resonate with your primary audience.

Engaging With Your Audience

After creating these personas, think about how you want to engage with your audience. Will you be sending a thank-you email after they’ve made a donation? Do you plan to lead donors through a welcoming journey to your organization and highlight your impactful work? Would you like to educate potential donors on the impact of their donations? Consider all communication approaches carefully.

Leveraging Marketing Automation Tools

Utilize marketing automation tools to reduce manual effort in implementing these initiatives. With Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud Account Engagement, numerous automation tools are at your disposal. Your organization can utilize Engagement Studio Programs, Automation Rules, Completion Actions, Page Actions, Dynamic Lists, and more!

I’m seeing every time there’s a process improvement it’s an opportunity for us to reach more people and that’s where I see the difference. My team is focusing on going back to our mission. We can’t communicate the Gospel if we’re sitting behind a computer doing data entry. We can’t mobilize the global church if we’re making follow-up emails for every action. We can’t serve people living with a disability if we’re stuck on administrative tasks all day long.”

Jason Holden

SVP of Operations, Joni and Friends

How Nonprofits Leverage Automation Tools

Here are some of the most effective ways nonprofits utilize these automation tools:

Engagement Studio Programs

Establish a program to send a series of welcome emails when someone subscribes to your emails on your website. These emails can feature welcoming them to your organization, showcasing the impactful work your organization does, and informing them of the various ways they can engage or donate.

Automation Rules

Develop an automation rule that sends a thank-you email to individuals after they donate, and explains the significance of their donation to your organization. This gesture can make your donors feel valued and motivate them to contribute again in the future.

Completion Actions

Use completion actions to send an auto-responder email when someone fills out an Account Engagement form on your website. You can also utilize completion actions to add donors to specific lists based on forms they fill out, emails they open, links they click on, etc.

Page Actions

Use page actions to add people to lists based on pages they visit on your website. For example, you could add users to a “prospective volunteers” list if they visit a page on your website that talks about how they can get involved with your organization. Then, you can utilize completion actions to send those users an auto-responder email with actionable next steps on how to volunteer with your organization.

Dynamic Lists

Dynamic lists in Account Engagement are one of the most used features in the system for nonprofits! Dynamic Lists allow you to set criteria for lists, and your users will be added or removed from lists based on whether they meet the criteria or not. The best part about dynamic lists is that you can be reassured that your lists are up to date! The system will automatically handle list membership for you, which is one less thing you have to worry about. You can create lists based on all different criteria. One example I find most nonprofits use is creating a list of donors who have not donated in the last 6 months. Then, you can send emails to this list of donors and encourage them to donate.

Setting up these automation tools can be a little time-consuming in the beginning, but it will reduce the time you spend on marketing in the long run and make your life easier. This allows you to spend your time and energy on other areas of your nonprofit.

Personalizing Your Message

Remember to personalize your messaging! In today’s age of marketing, everyone expects their message to be personalized to them. Account Engagement makes that easy for you. Within the email builder, you are able to use tons of personalization fields that are dynamic for each person the email is sent to. For example, you can pull in your recipient’s first name and address the email to them. Which email would you rather receive: “Dear Valued Donor” or “Dear Julie”? You can also pull in data such as the last event they attended, how much their last donation was, or what city they live in. The possibilities are endless!

Utilizing Pre-header Text

A tool that is often under-utilized is the use of pre-header text in emails. Pre-header text is the text on the subject line that comes after your subject. It’s a great way to personalize emails and make donors feel like you’re talking to them personally. You can also use personalization fields in the pre-header text or subject line.

For example:

Subject: Tickets are now available for our annual Gala.

Pre-header text: Julie, will you be joining us?

With Account Engagement’s Lighting Email Builder, you can easily add preheader text to your emails.

Tracking Performance With Advanced Analytics

Remember to check Account Engagement’s reporting and analytics to track the performance of your marketing initiatives. Account Engagement offers detailed reporting on email sends, bounces, campaigns, forms, landing pages, lifecycles, and more. Reporting should be a focal point in your marketing strategy to assess your ROI and identify areas of success and improvement. This insight allows you to adjust your strategy accordingly.

Leveraging marketing automation tools like Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud Account Engagement can help nonprofits streamline their marketing efforts and maximize impact. By understanding your audience and creating targeted personas, you can ensure your messaging resonates with key stakeholders. Personalizing communications and utilizing features like dynamic lists and preheader text can enhance donor engagement. While the initial setup may require time, the long-term benefits will save time and resources, enabling you to focus on other critical areas. With Plative’s expertise, you can navigate the complexities of marketing automation and implement best practices effectively.

Written by

Julie Bailey

Sr. Business Analyst, Salesforce

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