The Most Effective Gratavid Strategy

Tips and tricks to get the most out of your video platform

Will Trapp
March 15, 2021 · 5 min read
The Most Effective Gratavid Strategy

In a time of increasing automation, it’s our mission at Gratavid to bring human connection to a digital world. We shouldn’t talk to people to like a line item on a spreadsheet.

Your constituents are humans. They talk like humans, act like humans, and think like humans. Your communication should do the same.

I've been lucky enough to see thousands of campaigns and millions of emails being sent through Gratavid. I am now certain of one thing:

The most effective strategy is thanking a list of contacts with a personalized video. 

Make it personal

I know everyone loves the idea of automation, but there is no substitute for a genuinely personalized video. Just like your contacts can spot the difference between a printed and hand-written card, they can spot the difference between a generic and personalized video.

You can’t automate relationships; however, you can automate your process. And that’s where Gratavid can help. The Gratavid tasks list makes it easy to upload your list and knock out each video one by one. 

Write your contact's name on a piece of paper

If you take the time to personalize a video, you want to do everything you can to make sure your contacts see the video. One of our favorite tricks is to write the contact's name on a piece of paper or whiteboard when you start recording the video.

Name on whiteboard example in email

Notice John's name in our video? Can you tell it's actually written and not an automated text overlay?

Now imagine your name is John. Would you click on the video?

Share a powerful testimonial after your personalized video

Now it's time for the cherry on top. Since we've captured your contact's attention, why not share a generic video that can communicate a bigger message. Luckily, Gratavid makes this easy too.

You can use Gratavid's story feature to add a generic video after your personalized video. The generic video can be a powerful testimonial, a thank you from the board or even a professionally edited video you uploaded. You can even include all 3 videos after your personalized video!

The generic content is shown to each contact; you simply personalize the first thirty seconds to make everyone feel special.

See this awesome example from Arkansas 4-H Foundation.

Send through Gmail or Outlook

One of my favorite features is you can send Gratavids directly through your own Gmail or Outlook account. A good email reputation is key to beating spam filters. Email reputation depends on 1) the domain (i.e. - "") and 2) the server (i.e. - IP address) sending your email.

Sending through Gmail or Outlook ensures your Gratavid is sent from your domain and a highly reputable server.

Automatically resend if not watched

The truth is not everyone is going to see your video right away. People are busy and might not check their email for a few days, or worse: your email ends up in the spam or the promotions folder. The good news is Gratavid can automatically resend your Gratavids if not opened or watched.

HTML-heavy emails are a huge flag for spam filters. HTML-heavy emails contain a lot of formatting, color, and pictures. Imagine the emails you receive from a retailer (i.e. - Old Navy, Walmart, etc.) sharing their 4th of July sales; those are HTML-heavy emails. Because Gratavids contain your branding and a nice video preview/GIF, our emails are considered HTML-heavy too. Therefore, they can sometimes end up in the spam and promotions folder.

However, this is why it's so important to enable automatic resending. When our system resends a Gratavid that has not been watched we resend it as a plain-text email. A plain-text email does not contain any HTML (ie - formatting, colors, pictures); therefore, your resends won't get flagged as spam.

Assign a task list owner

For larger teams, let a stewardship/relations role manage the tasks list for the entire team. They can handle gathering the list of contacts, uploading the list, and then assign tasks to the individual fundraisers.

We’ve been thanked repeatedly for finally giving the stewardship roles a tool to empower the entire team. 

Putting it all together

  1. Make it personal

  2. Write your contact's name on a piece of paper to boost click-through rate and engagement.

  3. Add a powerful generic video such as a testimonial after your personalized video

  4. Send through Gmail or Outlook

  5. Turn on automatic resend to beat spam

  6. Assign a task list owner for the team

Simply put, the organizations that have the most success build strategies around the tasks list. From making it a priority to thank first time donors, personalized follow-ups to prospective families, or simply wishing your top donors a random thank you, there are so many ways you can incorporate personalized video in your strategy.

It’s not rocket science, people love hearing their own name. It makes them feel like you care and they are a part of your mission. Personalized videos are a meaningful and memorable message that will make you stand out.

Happy thanking!

Will Trapp
Founder & CEO @ Gratavid
Will Trapp is the founder and CEO of Gratavid. Gratavid is a software platform for collecting and sharing personalized videos.
Gratavid icon

Ready to stand out with personalized video?

Check out our favorite Gratavid testimonials below, and visit for examples and to learn more.

Eshon Allen

Gratavid truly helped us reimagine the connections we make between our school community and the donors who make it all possible.

Eshon Allen
Jenny Johnson

Gratavid has helped take our stewardship to a new level. I can not express enough how much I love this platform.

Ole Miss Foundation
Jenny Johnson
Ole Miss Foundation
Kerri Naber

Our donors are so thankful to receive Gratavids because it communicates that they are a big part of our mission. A personalized video makes them feel valued and seen.

Mercy Multiplied
Kerri Naber
Mercy Multiplied
Zack Huffman

Gratavid is a game changer. Since starting I’ve used it every day.

Teach For America
Zack Huffman
Teach For America
Contact Us


Our team can answer your questions, provide product demos, and create custom plans that fit your needs. We can't wait to hear from you.