How to create an email blast

Email blasting is a powerful tool for any organization. It allows you to quickly and effectively communicate with your supporters to promote action.

Learn how to create a blast – add recipients, choose a theme, and enter content. Preview your blast before sending or schedule it for a later time.

Create a blast

1. Select the broadcaster you want to use to send the blast by going to Communication > [Select broadcaster]. Click “Email.” You will see a list of previously drafted and sent emails, if any exist. Select “New blast.” 

New blast

2. Enter a slug and description. A slug is the name of your email. Leave an optional short description or note in the “Description” text box.

Slug and description

3. If you are including links to your website in your blast, consider checking the provided checkbox. When checked, forms on your website will auto-populate with information from the recipient’s profile. This could increase the number of people who complete the form, but could cause confusion if the email is forwarded to another recipient.

For example, you send an email blast with a link to your website's online petition. When Jane Doe opens your email and clicks on the link to sign the petition, the form will already have her name and email fields filled out. She only needs to click "Sign petition" in order to take the action.  

Adding info automatically

4. Click Create and edit. You will be directed to the “Recipients” section of your blast.

Add recipients

Select recipients for your blast.

1. Decide whether you are sending this blast to supporters or prospects based on your recipients' support statuses. Take a moment to learn more about emailing prospects and how this might affect your email deliverability.

 Supporters v prospects

2. Select recipients based on a list, tag, or saved filter. For example, you may add the subscribers of your weekly newsletter by adding all supporters with the tag “weekly newsletter.”

Select recipients by tag

Alternatively, you may choose “All” and select all supporters in your nation, or all prospects. Remember that it is good practice to segment your email list in order to increase your email deliverability.

3. Click Save and select theme button. This will direct you to the “Theme” section of your email blast.

Select a theme

Under “Theme” you may choose from a selection of publicly available themes. Select a theme by hovering over the thumbnail image and click “Use theme.” This will save your selected theme and direct you to the “Body” section of your email.

You may return to the “Theme” section at any time to select a different theme. To create a custom theme, see details below. 


Create a custom theme

If you do not want to use a public theme, you may create your own custom theme.

To create a custom theme:

1. Under the “Theme" tab click on “New custom theme."

New custom theme

2. Name your custom theme. Check the “Clone your current theme” checkbox to use your current public theme as a base template.

New mailing theme

3. Click Create theme

3. You will be directed to the HTML editor, where you can make changes to the template. Learn more about liquid in NationBuilder templates

html template

4. Click Save and publish to publish your new theme. Click Restore default to remove any changes you made. 

You can use your saved custom theme for future email blasts. When you create a new email, go to Theme > Custom themes. 

Theme to custom theme

All previously created custom themes will be listed. To use one of your previously created themes, click on “switch to” next to the name of the theme you want.

Switch to themes

After selecting your theme, you will be taken to the “Body” section of your email blast.

Enter content

To enter content and images for your email blast, click the "Body" tab of your blast.

1. The default sender of your blast is the name of your broadcaster. Change the sender by entering a new name in the “From” field. 


2. Enter a subject line for your email in the “Subject” field.


3. Enter content for the body of your email. Remember to upload image files under the “Files” tab before inserting them to your blast

Files tab

Note: Supported file attachments to emails include .ai, .bmp, .csv, .doc, .docx, .eps, .gif, .ico, .ics, .jpeg, .jpg, .json, .pdf, .png, .ppt, .pptx, .svg, .swf, .txt, .xls, .xlsx, .xml, .zip, .css, .scss, .js, and .html.

4. Personalize your blast using liquid variables. Using liquid you are able to pull in information from a person’s profile including:

  • Name
  • Party
  • Tags
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Twitter/Facebook followers

Review spam score

Every email provider has a different formula to determine which emails are considered spam. To make sure your email blast gets to your recipients, your content will automatically get checked for any issues. Click on the "Spam score" tab and make sure your spam score is very low. If you get a score over 4, you should revise your email.


Clone a blast

To create a copy of your blast, click on the "Clone" tab. Then, enter a slug for the new email blast.


Click the button_clone.png button and a new email blast will be created. Once you're redirected to your new email blast, you'll see that the settings, files, recipients, theme, and content have all been cloned.

Note: You cannot clone A/B test emails at this time. Email A/B testing is only available to those on the Organization plan or above.

Preview and send your email

Send yourself a test email before you send your blast. Enter the email of your choice in the the text box. Click “Send test email.” 

Send test email

Click Send button to send your email blast immediately. This button will always display the number of recipients. If you do not see the option to send your email, check to see if you are still in your trial period. Email blasting is only available once your nation is out of trial. 

Once you have sent your email, view the results by going to the "Recipients" or "Dashboard" areas of your blast. 


Learn more about your email blast results.

Schedule your email 

Please note that scheduling is only available to those on the Organization plan or above. If you would like scheduling activated in your nation, please contact 

If you want to schedule your email for a later time, click First schedule button.

A pop-up box will appear. Select a date and time. The delivery must be scheduled at least one hour in the future. Click “Schedule” to confirm.

Schedule pop up

Click on the blue link to adjust the scheduled time: Scheduled time.

Enter a new date or time and click “Schedule” to save your changes.

Change scheduled blast

Click Unschedule to cancel your blast. View all scheduled emails by going to [Broadcaster] > Email > Scheduled. 

How to optimize email deliverability

Understanding email consent

How to maintain a healthy email list

Understanding the results of your email blast

Understanding spam

Issues and suggestions on our radar

There are some issues related to creating an email blast that have come to our attention. We are monitoring their importance to the community on the product issues and suggestions page. You can follow each of the below issues to keep updated on their status.

Report of file types not uploading correctly to emails

Giving the option to view an email online

Simultaneously create blog post and email blast

If you’re unclear on how this feature works, please ask a question. If you would like to see changes to this feature, please submit a suggestion.

Not finding what you're looking for? Browse the Communication FAQs