A survey by The Manifest found that 69% of businesses spend time and money on email marketing. This points to good news for the effectiveness of email marketing, but it also means you are competing for attention in people’s inboxes. With competition high, you want your emails to be at the top of their game.
Email marketing can be an art, not a science to get right. We’ve put together a list of best practices that can help to ensure your emails are getting opened and are doing their job once readers have their eyes on them.
Personalizing emails for each recipient could help to build trust, increase open rates and sales. Include first names at the start of messages where you can. You can also personalize with the content you use, sending relevant things that add value. Neil Patel recommends pairing personalized emails with personalized landing pages for extra impact. You can personalize the offers you send and the images you use too, the list goes on.
Optimize for Mobile
The amount of people viewing emails on their phones is pretty significant, with Litmus finding that 46% of all email opens were from a mobile. Take the time to make sure that your messages look as good as possible on phones. Look for mailing platforms that offer responsive designs that shift the appearance of an email depending on what device it is a viewed on. CopyPress have written a handy guide to help you out.
Superb Subject Lines
Your subject line is an important factor for determining whether your email gets opened at all. You want to be careful not to include any words that could get your email sent to the spam folder. But in general, you don’t want to be too salesy, avoiding anything to do with the word’s ‘money’ or ‘free’. For a big list of words to avoid take a look at Emarsys article.
You want to write something that will draw the reader into the email but is also relevant to its content. You could write something really attention grabbing, but with no connection to what’s inside. This could get your emails opened in the short term, but you risk annoying readers and decreasing trust in your company.
It’s important to keep a clean email list for a number of reasons. Including the fact that it reduces the chances of your messages being sent to spam and ensures your emails are being sent to people that may actually be interested in them, saving you time and money. Cleaning your email list involves removing inactive email addresses and/or those with low or no engagement. How you determine who to remove is up to you. This can happen with email addresses for a number of reasons such as:
- Subscribers did not give a valid email address when signing up.
- Changed email addresses.
- Poor or little segmentation of your list.
When cleaning your list pay attention to hard and soft bounces. Hard bounces point towards a permanent reason for your messages not being delivered, compared to soft which indicates a more temporary issue that could be resolved.
Segment Your List
Segmentation is splitting your list up into smaller lists based on certain subscriber characteristics. This means that recipients are more likely to receive content that is relevant to them. Hopefully increasing open rates, decreasing unsubscribes and in the long run, generating more sales.
Segmentation allows you to laser target certain demographics. MemberPress offer some suggestions for segmentation based on:
- Sign-up date.
- Email activity.
What Amount and When?
It’s important to find the right frequency of messages for your business. If you send too many, you risk annoying subscribers. Too little and they may forget who you are, or you may not move them along the funnel enough to make a sale.
Finding out the optimum time of day to send messages could help too. This is the time that works for your business personally. Moosend point out that for a while, 10am on a Tuesday was suggested as the best time to email. But what this meant is that everybody posted then, which meant that your email was more likely to get lost in amongst all the others. And this didn’t take into account who you are sending your emails to either. Night shift workers for example might have different inbox checking patterns than someone that works 9 -5. Find what works for you.
Optimize your Call-to-Actions
Your CTAs should be clear, concise and tie in with the rest of your message. Here are some tips:
- Make the color and font consistent with your branding.
- Choose your words wisely. Spend time finding high converting phrases.
- Optimize for all devices. A clear CTA on a laptop may fade into the background on a mobile if your design is not responsive.
- Be sure to AB test each element.
Encourage Social Sharing
People that are on your list have already shown an interest in your company, so it makes sense to let them know that you are active on social platforms as well. Adding to the platforms you can use to build relationships with them and keep them updated.
Make sure you test separate elements of your emails so you can keep them optimized for conversion. What works for others may not work for your company, so it’s important to find your own way.
Wrapping it Up
It can take trial and error to get solid results from email marketing for your company. But hopefully we have shown you some good places to get started. AB testing is your most valued accomplice when formulating best practices. Find what works for you, as there is no one size fits all. And continually test to stay at the top of your game.
It’s a great idea to follow best practices when creating and sending emails. But you need to have a list to send to in the first place. MailOptin’s lead generation plugin makes it easy to create and optimize email subscription forms. With a variety of types to choose from, eye-catching display effects and simple to use AB testing.
Once your list starts growing you can use our email automation plugin to send event-triggered emails and newsletters. Or you can integrate many of the popular email platforms if you want to do something more complicated.
What are you waiting for? Get MailOptin today.