10 Tips for Effective Family Communications

  • Perform A/B testing: Test one element at a time, sending two versions of your mailer or email to two separate segments of your list. Determine what gets the most interest and use that going forward.
  • Add some social proof: Families are looking for evidence to trust you. Include parent and student quotes that back up your claims and inspire confidence in what you're communicating.
  • Use strong calls to action in every email: Include a clear action on each email or mailing you send out.
  • Use descriptive headers: A header like "You are Invited" doesn't say much, but "You are Invited to White Hill School's Fall Open House" sounds far more personal.
  • Focus on smaller groups within the list. Don't start with all the students on the list at once. Start by targeting those families that may be most familiar with your school by filtering on location. This will start a history of emails that are likely to be opened rather than sent to spam.
  • Pull a new list before each communication to ensure you are excluding families who choose to opt out through EMA's system.
  • Send emails from a person rather than a group or "noreply" email address.
  • About spam: If another user on your IP address has been flagged for spamming, you could be flagged, too.
  • Use permission marketing: Once somebody has given you permission to communicate with them, make sure you listen to them and gauge their responses so you don’t overdo it and make them change their mind about your messages.
  • Pay attention to your metrics: It’s important to choose which metrics you want to measure against before you send and consistently monitor them with each send so you can track your improvements.
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