Reach New Supporters with an eCard Campaign

January 17, 2019

Here’s a simple trick for refreshing your supporter engagement campaigns: Try an eCard campaign. Much like a classic postcard delivered to your mailbox, eCards are a thoughtful, quick way to deliver a personalized message to friends and family.

How do they work?

eCard campaigns are managed through online signup forms. They’re similar to a “tell a friend” campaign, but notably also include an eye-catching image for the “card” that is emailed to a recipient. Depending on the type of campaign you set up, there may also be a fundraising component to your eCard forms. CRM providers may have eCard tools, but we also built our own eCards integration with WordPress.

To summarize the general steps:

  1. Your supporter selects the image they wish to send to their friends or family.
  2. Then, your supporter customizes their message and enters the email address(es) for where to send the eCard.
  3. Finally, your supporter fills out any additional requested or required fields, then submits the form to process and send their eCard emails to their contacts.

Remember, the eCard recipients aren’t direct supporters of your organization just yet, since they haven’t signed themselves up to your list. However, their potential for becoming a supporter increases, since they now have a personal connection to your work.

Animated gif cycles through the multiple steps of an eCard campaign

Where to start

An eCard campaign can be a simple, standalone form, or it could become a facet of a larger campaign alongside other petitions and fundraising efforts.

Start planning with these tips:

  1. Identify a purpose. Will this campaign be a fun, evergreen form that folks will want to fill out throughout the year or will it be customized for a particular holiday or event? This education post from NP Engage outlines recommendations for holiday campaigns and communications.
  2. Gather your image files. The most important part of your eCard campaign is going to be creating the engaging images that you choose for your options. Consider whether you also need a graphic designer to customize your photos with any logos or other branding. For example, Chimp Haven added simple, branded graphics over images for their eCards. Other folks have used meme’s, illustrations, or other custom graphics.
  3. Structure your message. Alongside your supporters’ message, eCard tools will allow you to set a “fixed” message that should be included. Use this space to promote other ways your eCard recipients can get involved and support your organization. This is your opportunity to expand your audience and inform people how they can get involved.

A few great examples

No matter what kind of eCards form you use, your tactics and image choices can make a huge impact. Here are three distinctly different yet inspiring approaches to eCard campaigns.

WildCare

Who can resist this adorable skunk? Wildcare inspires donors with their eCards built on Luminate. Send your friends some fuzzy creatures and support Wildcare’s work in caring for and rehabilitating injured wildlife.

Wildcare's ecards and donation form fields overlap an extra cute photo of a small, fuzzy skunk.

Friends of the Earth

Select from a wide variety of images on Friends of the Earth’s custom eCard tool:

Friends of the Earth's ecards form starts with explaining steps 1, 2, and 3 and provides different category options such as "New Baby" and "Congratulations."

These eCards work for all sorts of occasions and even allow for a customized background.

Mamas Day Campaign

We love this Mamas Day campaign from Forward Together. Send a bright and beautiful graphic for your eCard and sign their petitions to support black mamas. This creative campaign inspires year after year.

The Mamas Day eCards are all very colorful and designed by an illustrator, celebrating strong black women.

What’s next?

Luminate, Salsa, Classy, and Engaging Networks all offer tools that can be used to create your own eCard campaigns. We also built a WordPress eCard Engagement Platform.

The Cornershop eCard Platform is beautiful, engaging, easy-to-use, and (best of all) integrates with a variety of CRMs so you can know which supporters participate in your campaigns.

Please Contact us if you’d like to see a demo!

By Chelsea Bassett

Chelsea has over a decade of experience with progressive nonprofits, social change, and nonprofit technology, thanks to nine years working at Salsa Labs in technical support, product development, and marketing before joining the Cornershop team. Her passion for quality communication, authentic relationships, and creative nerds serves her well as project manager at Cornershop.