As fads come and go and Social Media changes around us, Email Marketing continues to be the single most effective way to grow a business online. So how can we improve it? By taking simple steps that will get our emails seen, opened, and followed by more people, more often, with better results.
While you may hear some half-hearted arguments to the contrary, emails should be sent early in the morning, 6 am-8 am local time. This ensures that they will be one of the first things seen when your readers are opening their inboxes (around 9 am).
Use Creative Calls to Action
The Subject Line is your one and only chance to grab your customers’ attention and draw them into reading the rest of your message. You need to treat it like the unique opportunity it is and entice your readers to action. Words like ‘Buy’ and ‘Check Out’ are too direct and often get flagged in SPAM filters. For better results, use positive, engaging words like ‘Enhance’ ‘Imagine’ or ‘Grow’ in short, attention-grabbing quips. Remember, sometimes less is more.
This is actually a two-pronged approach brought about by the growing dichotomy of email buyer/supplier preferences: In general, people don’t like to read or do anything that makes buying your product harder for them. The most effective way to get around this is to make your emails very image-centric and focus your messages to tight, easy-to-process blurbs and Calls to Action. Unfortunately, most email clients pre-screen incoming emails on an image-to-text ratio and automatically flag messages that rely too heavily on pictures. Despite how annoying this is for marketers, we can generally agree that it’s good that spammers can’t send us images.
The trick to beating the ratio test while still appealing to your audience’s tastes lies in your emails? formatting. If you’re using a template service, make sure that the designs are tested for deliverability before you select them. If you can?t confirm that just try and pick a design that takes maximum advantage of the space available and can be customized to fit your needs (and remember, HTML elements like background colors aren’t counted as images). Once you’ve selected a design, you?ll be able to move onto content.
Always begin your written emails with a short pitch; get right to the point and make it clear why the reader is receiving this particular message. Once that’s done, present a Call to Action. This is most effectively done with buttons or images directing readers to other content like web pages or downloads. Make sure that you use Render Checking to ensure that your Call to Action is visible without scrolling down through the email. All additional information (resources, contact info, etc.) can be included at the end of your message.
Above everything else, stay focused. A poorly targeted campaign can fail just as hard as a poorly designed one. Follow these steps, make good emails, and send it to the right people and you will do fine.