Why Email Marketing still matters
The word “email” might still make you think of informational, text-based Outlook clutter trapped in an old-fashioned interface. But times have changed.
Emails are still a great way to generate leads or sales for your business. You can either cold pitch using emails or send emails to a list of people who you have already established a relationship with. Either way, it is important to customize emails such that they grab the attention of your target readers. Imagine having a list of more than 30 emails: You will only read those that capture your attention, won’t you? This is exactly why you need to optimize your emails. Have you been having problems with, for example, the opening rates of your email campaigns? Have you been receiving less than the expected number of click-throughs? Then worry no more, because these tips will guide you and give you a hand.
Have a catchy headline
A headline determines whether your reader will open your email in the first place. So, how do you go about creating a catchy headline? There are many aspects to be considered when drafting the subject of the email. The most important thing to remember is to be precise. Your title should not be excessively persuasive – you don’t want to come off as desperate – but shouldn’t be too boring either.
It is also important to personalize your headlines. If you are sending an email to a company that deals with the sale of automotive, the headline should be related to their field of work. Also, you should include the company’s name on the headline. For better results, you could identify a problem the company is struggling with, then tweak your email to address the problem. This way, you will get the attention of the reader. For example, “Simple ways to effectively drive sales for company XYZ” is likely to impress a marketing manager of a company that has experienced a reduction in sales.
Include your name and signature
Sending an email that does not include the name of the sender may not give you the results you want. If you send emails that have a name and signature, it is likely to make your target readers trust you more – they will also be more likely to click your message. You might even consider including your photo.
Some readers will respond quicklier if you include your position in the company. For example, you can state whether you are the director, chief executive officer or marketing manager.
Customize your message
Your message should be personalized and ideally be written in a conversational style. You can personalize the messages by researching your reader: Learn the type of stuff they subscribe to and their personal concerns or those of their company. At this point, you will be able to draft an email that shows your reader that you understand them, and you have a solution to their problems. Here are some of the benefits of personalizing a message:
- it makes the recipient feel valued
- it leads to more higher open rates
- it may help in generating leads
- it can enable you to retain your current clients
- it may translate to more sales
All about the body
Other than the headline, your emails need a main body that contains the message you have for the recipient. The message here should be concise and compel your readers to take action. Ensure you exhaust all the information you have in a way that is understandable. If possible, you should use visual content. Also, it is critical to make your message easy to read – because no one has time to read a novel of an email with a way too small font size. Why not try using bullets, short sentences, and paragraphs?
Make it visual
An image speaks volumes and may help you achieve better results. It is very important to make sure they are relevant to your message. For instance, if you are recommending an ebook, you can include the cover page in your email. Most readers are intrigued by images, so go ahead and incorporate them in your email marketing strategy.
A call to action
… will help you achieve the ultimate goal of your email. You want to increase click rates, then convert them into leads? Therefore, you should let the recipient know what you want them to do. The call to action should include a button or at least a link to click. Whatever you use, it is important to make it easy to locate. Use compelling yet friendly language, such as ‘click here’, ‘download here’, ‘join us’, or ‘follow this link’. Make the links or buttons visible by making them unique from the rest of the email. Most readers will get bored to get to the bottom of the email to locate the call to action. For this reason, you can include several buttons leading your targets to your main page. The buttons should be distributed all over the email for better results – but don’t get too spammy.
Avoid being spam
Many marketing emails are marked as spam by readers, even when they could be relevant. Some email service providers will also move your emails directly to the spam folder. So how can you evade the spam filter? First of all, you need to avoid specific keywords when you are drafting the email. Such words and phrases include:
- free stuff
- this is not spam
- great offer
… just to name a few. Avoiding these words will help you beat the spam filters in the first place – if you keep an eye on image sizes and the total amount of links in your mail, you’re good to go. Even if these thing don’t get your emails marked as spam, the email service may still classify the messages as promotion. However, if you cannot avoid such words, you can request your target audience to add you to their contact list. Also, the readers can whitelist your contact to prevent them from being filtered to the spam folder.
Comply with the law
As much as you want many subscribers on your list, give them the option to unsubscribe whenever they want. Furthermore, it is a law that ought to be complied with by all email marketers. Think of how you would feel agitated if you keep receiving emails that are either irrelevant to you or just uninteresting. If a reader cannot unsubscribe from your emails, their next step would be to mark your emails as spam, and this will destroy your reputation.
You would be better off giving your readers a choice of opting out and be sure that they can return. Ensure that you convince your customers to stay with you – not directly, but through relevant contents and benefits. You may be surprised that they will not opt out of the subscription.
Make them sharable
As you draft your emails, ensure that you give your readers the option to share the content. The ability to share content can either be via links to your main page or your social media sites. Give your readers a variety of options, as they may be on one platform and not the other. Some of the common platforms are LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter. What happens when you allow readers to share? You can get more potential customers, and this increases the possibility of eventually growing your sales or leads.
Go easy on the number
It could come out as irritating if you send emails every day. Be realistic as you submit your messages, so that you don’t push your recipients into unsubscribing from your emails. Always follow the rule of sending an email and allowing your readers enough time to open it. If you do not get a response after seven days, follow up with another email. Then take three days if at all you do not get a response once again. Beyond this point, you should only draft one final email.
Research has shown that if you send three emails in the said order without receiving a response, then it is likely that the recipient is not interested in your content and will never reply click anything inside your emails. However, be sure that out of ten emails you send, if you follow the rule, you will get a high response rate – because it is likely that a reader may not have seen the email the first time you sent it. It is also possible that they saw it and saved it for later, but forgot to read – all of this happened before. Therefore, it is good to follow up without coming off as annoying.
Make it mobile friendly
Have you ever received a very long email that was impossible to read from a mobile device? It is irritating, right? As an email marketer, be sure to optimize your email such that it can be opened from any device. You don’t want to lock out potential leads, just because they do not have a device that allows them to peruse through your email. Therefore, make your message short and concise. If you have images, test to see whether they can be opened on a mobile device. Most marketers will use automated tools to send emails. However, most of the successful email marketers take their time to craft emails that are personalized and short. Readers will disregard your emails if they are too long and/or too small to read from small devices.
Use a trusted address
You should avoid using Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail or Rocketmail email services. Most readers will ignore such emails. Since you want recipients to have a professional view of you, it is important to customize your email address. Use a domain email address to get the upper hand over your competitors. You are likely to get higher click-through rates when using a unique domain address, as opposed to using one of the other services. Having a domain email address is not difficult; you can purchase them at affordable rates from different domain hosts.
Send them at the right time
The last tip on this list is sending your emails at the right time. Studies have indicated that emails sent over the weekend are likely not to be opened – I guess that’s comprehensible somehow. Just go the extra mile to research when your reader is likely to open the email. You should check the time zone of your target audience and determine when is best to send that email that could give your business a breakthrough. Other studies show that an email sent on Sunday night is likely to be opened – because it is the first thing your recipient will see on Monday morning. However, run tests and trials with your readers and determine what time suits them best.
Bring it all together
Now that you learned a few things about the evergreen discipline of email marketing, try bringing it all together for your business. One thing’s for sure: Optimization of your emails will sharply increase your conversions. The more your emails are opened, the more likely it is that you will get many clicks. Optimize your email through personalization, brevity, and preciseness. Do not nag your readers, but be consistent with your message. It’ll be worth it.