1. Choose a clear topic.
You must have a reason for sending the email. Don’t send email just because you haven’t sent an email in a while or because some marketer told you to do it. Would you want to receive a purposeless email, much less open it? Of course not! Neither would you customers, so always have a reason for sending the email. Try one of these:
- Promotional email – Everyone loves a sale! Give your customers an incentive to shop, buy, or schedule a meeting.
- Informative email – Teach them something about your product, share behind-the-scenes information, give support or training information, etc. There are a million different ways to shape an informative email, but the end result should be that your customer is better off after reading it than they were before they read it.
- Entertainment email – These are more rare because entertainment is fairly rare in the email space, but these are basically “feel-good” emails that share love, humor, or simple entertainment. Maybe it’s a great customer story, or maybe it’s something funny going on at your office.
- Invitations – Are you having an event, open house, fundraiser, or party? Send an email invitation to your customers.
2. Focus on your subject line.
The email subject line is quite possibly the most important part of your email because it is the primary factor used when a customer decides to open your email or not. Find something engaging, clever, funny, shocking, or something similar that elicits emotion. Create incentive.
3. Have a clear call to action.
Do you want your customers to read your blog? Do you want them to buy something? Download a manual? Watch a video? Forward to a friend? You have to tell your customers what to do – in clear language – so don’t hide your calls to action or bury them in text links. Use buttons and clear calls to action, and you’ll see your conversion rate soar.
4. Keep it short and simple.
We all live busy lives and have only a few quick minutes to read our email – and even then, we’re more likely to skim rather than read. Keep your language concise, carefully check spelling and grammar, and avoid long diatribes. Those don’t belong in an email – put those on your blog – and keep email for short and sweet messages.
5. Focus on clear design.
Don’t clutter your layout. Also, don’t forget that some of your customers (especially if you’re sending to a work email) may not see your images, so make sure your language is descriptive and don’t forget that ALT text.
Always send test emails to more than one person. You have to proofread it, check how the layouts look, and make sure your links work. Never assume! Make sure your headlines look great, your subject line is engaging, and your text and images flow together well. Also, check for minor settings like the account from which you’re sending the email and the list you’re using. After all, you don’t want to send a niche email for your budget customers that only shows luxury products.
So, are you ready to send your next email? These tips should help you rise above the junk mail in your customers’ inboxes. For even more effective emails, try this extra bonus tip: use the analytics features in your email vendor! Which emails that you’ve sent have received the most engagement? What did they click on? What does your average open rate look like? Email is highly subjective, so take a look at all the data and figure out what is working and what isn’t. Learn from mistakes you’ve made and don’t repeat them again. Ideally, we want to see a general upward trend in open rates and engagement over time as you refine your techniques and improve upon your list.