When you’re growing your email list through Civic Shout or other channels, implementing a compelling and useful welcome email is one of the best things you can do to give your new members a great experience and maximize their long term value.Check out these tips on implementing a great welcome email:

1. Introduce yourself: First impressions mean everything. And when it comes to your email list, your welcome email is your opportunity to make a good first impression. The single most important aspect of your welcome email is introducing your organization or campaign and clearly communicating what you’re working on and what issues you care about the most.

2. Set expectations: Give people who just joined your email community an indication of what they can expect moving forward. This can include things like what kinds of emails you’ll be sending, what you might ask them to do in the future, and how often you’ll be contacting them.

3. Include a low-bar ask: When people take a second action shortly after joining your email community, they’re more likely to stay engaged for the long haul. Include a one-question survey or an evergreen petition to give new members an easy opportunity to re-engage from day one. Including an evergreen Civic Shout petition is a great way to do this while also earning additional credits to fuel your cycle of list growth.

4. Provide meaningful ways to get involved: Give people the opportunity to get involved in more meaningful ways, by including a donation ask, volunteering ask or other relatively high-bar ask. The percentage of people who take that higher-bar action on day one might be low, but people won’t do the hard things you need them to do unless you explicitly ask them to, and you might be surprised by how many people are ready to take the next step.

5. Make it easy to unsubscribe: Include language and a prominent link making it abundantly clear that they can easily unsubscribe at any time. If someone doesn’t want to receive your emails, it doesn’t do you any good to continue emailing, and it might actually hurt. Plus, by making it easy to unsubscribe you’ll minimize spam complaints from people who don’t want to receive your emails or don’t remember signing up, protecting you from potential deliverability problems down the road.

6. Encourage replies: One great way to get an email deliverability boost out of your welcome email is to encourage people to reply to the email to answer a question. For example, you might ask them to share why they care about an issue you’re working on, or tell you which policy issues they care about the most. This works because email service providers like Gmail take replies as an indication that you’re sending engaging content that people want to receive.

7. Keep it timely: Send the welcome email as soon as possible after someone has joined your list, ideally within a few days. If you use Action Network, we strongly recommend using our integration, which adds people who sign your Civic Shout petitions to your Action Network group in real-time (other CRM integrations coming soon). If you don’t use Action Network, we recommend downloading your new supporters from Civic Shout at least once a week and uploading them to your CRM as soon as you can.