3 Not-So-Obvious Email Tips for Government to Effectively Reach Citizens

I’d venture to say that for most of us working in or with government, the more people we can reach effectively, the better off we are. Here are three not-so-obvious ways to do this. For additional best practices like this, be sure to download our newly released guide: Public Sector Digital Management Communication: The Critical Role of Email. And for real-time tips we invite you to join our upcoming Public Sector Communication Best Practices webinar on June 7. Reserve your complimentary seat now!

1. Capture Subscribers at Exciting or Critical Times

One of the best times to capture subscribers is during an exciting or critical time for your organization. For example, in early 2012, Seattle experienced four straight days of snow and ice. Citizens in King County poured onto the county’s metro transit home page to get the critical information they needed about the storm. The takeaway? At a time where there is a huge increase of citizens on your site, make sure you seize the opportunity to sign up as many as you can. Once you are connected to them, you can proactively communicate in the future.

How about a baby Wild Black Bear just born in a den in Maine? While this exciting event was happening, the Wildlife Research Foundation live-streamed the event. As excited users came to their page to view the live-streaming, the Foundation encouraged visitors to subscribe to their bulletins.

2. Drive Sign-ups through Your Social Channels by Just Asking

Sometimes we get so caught up in thinking of the perfect tweet, Facebook post, or subject line, we forget that sometimes the easiest way to ask citizens to subscribe to emails is simply to just remind them and ask. Check out this very simple but effective tweet sent out by Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton.

Oh, and when trying to spread your message even further, it’s not a bad idea to add to your (tweet) — “Please Retweet.” While there is some debate around this in terms of data versus “gut,” this Hubspot data does point to the fact that “Please retweet” is the 11th most retweetable word.

3. Hook Your Subscribers Where They Are

When considering where to place subscription sign-up links on your website, always remember to review your website analytics first. For the pages that have the most popular and vital content – place your sign-up link on that page, in the top left. Take a look at the great example of a sign-up box on the LouisvilleKy.gov site below.


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