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This council’s COVID-19 email campaign raised £21K for local food banks

Stories of helpers continue to bring us hope through the uncertainty of COVID-19. From providing access to financial assistance to supporting students and parents, the public sector is stepping up to meet needs of their communities. Robert McCleary, Communications Manager of Gedling Borough Council, took to govCommunity — an online environment where govs can connect on COVID-19 best practices — to share a successful campaign the Council ran, using govDelivery as their main communications channel.

Email raises £21k in 48 hours

Gedling’s local food banks faced growing demand and needed support, so the Council decided to help.

They sent an email bulletin through govDelivery to 19,000 recipients with an outstanding open rate of 51%.

“In 48 hours we raised £21,000 for our local food banks with email being the most effective way in getting people signed up,” said McCleary.

Screenshot of Gedling's email shows people gathered at a food bank followed by text.

Screenshot of Gedling Borough Council’s Giving for Gedling email.


The Council’s initial goal was to raise £20,000, but within 48 hours they had surpassed their goal and raised £21,000. Realizing the generosity of their audience and community, the Council set a new goal to raise £25,000 with another email send.

What made the fundraising email a success?

The Council incorporates several best practices to make their email a success. It begins with strong branding, incorporating their logo, which creates trust in the audience. The message is one of sincerity — with councilmembers leading the cause by donating. An image of a food bank creates visual interest and engagement. A strong CTA at the bottom drives the audience to action.

Bringing it all together

With stay-at-home orders and social distancing, digital communications are an effective way to reach your audience. Gedling Borough Council’s story is one of hope. The Council was able to send 19,000 emails and raise £21,000 for local food banks in 48 hours through Granicus govDelivery solution. Digital communications are powering citizen engagement when face-to-face communication can’t.

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