Email marketing is incredibly effective – except for when it isn’t. That’s the clincher, right? If your emails are spammed or, worse, deleted by the recipients before they’re even read, all that work is for nothing. When you can align the information and offers you send with the wants and needs of your subscribers, all is right with the world – and you make more money.
Your boss wants those emails to land in inboxes and be opened excitedly because the content is so relevant to what your segmented prospects (more on segmenting later) want to learn, know or purchase.
Here are 7 things about email marketing your boss wants you to know so your email open rates and high-quality lead generation continues on to rise ever higher.
- Email is totally hip. It’s hard to believe but it’s true. None of us can get friends to respond via email anymore, so we thought it was dead. (If you’re not on Facebook – forget it, right?) But email marketing is like it’s very own thing. Last year, Experian released a report stating that email was still a major source of website traffic and lead generation for companies who use it, and it’s also a major source of revenue.
- Your subject line may be the most important thing you’ve ever written. Seriously, the statistics about subject lines is mindboggling. God bless those statistic-lovin’ professionals over at Mail Chimp who analyzed the subject lines , open rates and all kinds of other stuff through more than 200 MILLION emails. They learned a lot from it, though. The best subject lines of all are around 10 characters (no more than 40) and never have the words FREE!, Percent off, or Reminder. You’ll want to read their full report to get in on the über-science of email subject lines.
- Your HTML guys may need to cool it. Another thing those Mail Chimps found was that any HTML glitches that happen in the subject line can trigger spam filters to eliminate that email from ever getting in the inbox at all. Not good. They can strut their stuff in the body of the email (maybe, if it all translates across the device spectrum) but subject lines need to be pretty straightforward.
- Paying attention to how people engage (or not) pays off. Taking the time to review how people engage with your digital marketing materials across the board will help you craft emails that customer and contact list members want to read. Plus, the more you track individual behaviors, interests, and engagement, the better you’ll become at creating segmented contact lists and segment-relevant email content.
- Take the time to segment. And that brings us to Number 5. Segmenting requires quite a bit of time and effort but it really pays off. You have to realize that your customers and subscribers are all different and they have varying needs, they’re at different parts of the buying cycle and they all respond to different things. Make sure your marketing automation software provides the tools you need to make segmentation easy. We use SharpSpring and love it because their data tracking and analytics platforms make it easy for us to use metrics to create our segmented lists.
- Leveraging popular old blog posts is a smart way for visitors to opt-in. If you’re like most digital marketers and/or bloggers, you love to re-read those old posts that keep getting visits. Gosh, they’re good! Well, make them even more powerful (and keep them ranking) by adding opt-in forms to those oldies-but-goodies. What a smart way to keep successful website pages performing for you while keeping your contact lists fresh. Post Opt-In forms in a visible location and you’ll be surprised by the results.
- They MUST be mobile compatible. The majority of your marketing material is viewed on mobile devices, many of which have pretty small screens. Make sure your font, line spacing and the space around links and CTAs are comfortable enough for mobile users. Your emails should work as seamlessly on their mobile devices as they do on your desktop computer.
Get your email marketing prowess up to snuff with these seven tips. We’d love to hear more from you. What steps have you taken and what tricks have you used to gain noticeable results from your business’s emails?
Written by David Kaufer
David Kaufer is Founding Partner and Chief Dynamic Office in Kaufer DMC. He’s also a huge Oregon Ducks & Microbrew nut, Dad of awesome 8 year-old twin boys, husband, and big Sustainability and Autism advocate.