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We're constantly bombarded with messages. Whether it's companies trying to sell to us, charities seeking our donations or political parties who want our vote at election time––there's a lot out there and we have limited time, so we tend to filter information based on what interests us and what doesn’t. 

I frequently speak with campaigners about the ladder of engagement. The ladder of engagement is all about meeting people where they are at and taking them on a journey towards deeper commitment over time. One message doesn’t fit everyone, and it’s important to acknowledge that. For example, you wouldn't want to ask a casual supporter to go canvassing every day during an election. That big of an ask early on might come off too strong and turn them away. This is why it’s so important to keep your communications relevant to their journey.

Advanced privacy promotes quality engagement with your supporters 
Advanced privacy legislation has resulted in companies and campaigns being much more selective about how they communicate with individuals in order to really meet them where they are. To help facilitate this shift within our own community, NationBuilder launched best-in-class advanced privacy tools in 2018 to make it easier for our customers to truly engage with people how they want to be engaged. Advanced privacy puts the individual customer, supporter, and voter in the driver’s seat. It's about their preferences: What are they interested in and want to hear about? And that inherently means that people will pay more attention because when you reach out it’ll be about things to which they've explicitly said, “Yep. I’m interested. I want to hear about this."

It's about muscle memory as well. For example, if a political campaign is continuously talking to supporters about the things they care about, then over time, supporters begin to trust that when they open that campaign’s emails the content will be relevant to them and their lives.

Advanced privacy encourages industry best practices, which is good for your email deliverability
In the wake of advanced privacy legislation being passed in Europe (and other countries that have followed since), companies and campaigns are now much more aware of how they first engaged with individuals and more likely to create sun setting policies. A sun setting policy involves reaching out to anyone who hasn’t opened your emails in six months to ask their permission for continued outreach again, and if they decline or don't respond, removing them entirely, as having those people on your list hurts your email reputation. 

The reality is, the size of your email list does not matter if half of the people on it aren’t actually opening or engaging with your content. Additionally, poor historic email performance impacts your ability to get your emails delivered. The lower your engagement and open rate, the higher the risk that your email won't get delivered effectively––and worse, might not get delivered at all. This means it’s important to keep your engagement high to ensure you end up in people's inboxes.

Navigating advanced privacy doesn’t have to be complicated. In fact, as we hope is now clear––it’s an opportunity to connect with your supporters on the topics they care about most and build relationships with them that last.

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