Email marketing might not be as sexy or exciting as shooting a television commercial or a two-page magazine spread, but it’s still a great way to generate leads and get the word out about your business. In fact, it’s the single most effective and cost-efficient marketing vehicle today.
Every dollar spent on email marketing translates to an average return of $42. On the other hand, print and television campaigns generated a return of $ and $6.50 per dollar invested, respectively. For small businesses, this presents a great opportunity to reach out to customers without spending half of their monthly budget on marketing.
Don’t be dismayed, however, if no one’s opening your emails. You can’t just send an email blast to everyone on your mailing list and expect good results. Just like any marketing campaign, you need to have a strategy in place. You want to make sure that your recipients actually want to hear from you.
A digital marketing agency can help you create an email marketing plan that works for you, but it still pays to know the basics. Here are a few tips and tricks that will help you craft better emails and improve open and click-through rates.
Start building your mailing list
You rsquo;ve got to start somewhere, and the best place to do that is your mailing list. An email marketing strategy is only as good as the mailing list you have, so you need to start building one. And if you already have a couple hundred or thousand contacts in your list, you should always keep it growing.
You need to set the system up once, monitor progress once in a while, and you’re good to go. Your customer shouldn’t have any trouble signing up for your mailing list. Find a space on your website to add a subscription form. It could be a static form on your home page or a popup that appears on top of your landing pages. Just don’t overdo it to the point that it affects website user experience.
Create engaging content
One of the advantages of email marketing is that you open the doors for your customers to engage with your business directly. If your emails read like a brochure, then you’re missing out on an opportunity to make your content more engaging and responsive. There are three areas you need to work on.
First things first, you need to write a killer subject line. Something that will get people to open your emails. Write something short, pithy, and direct to the point. Take a quick look at your own inbox and see what grabs your attention. Overly long and formal subject lines tend to be ignored (unless it’s from something important), while fun and personalized ones are more likely to grab your attention.
Next, your email copy should sound like it came from a real person, not some soulless corporation. Address the reader directly and write as if you’re writing an old friend. Consumers are more likely to respond to a personal voice, even if they know it comes from a business.
Finally, make sure your content resonates with your readers. You can do this by segmenting your mailing lists by gender and other demographic factors. Content relevant to the recipient’s needs and wants is more likely to have a higher click-through rate.
Format your emails properly
Email filters have gotten smarter and more sophisticated in recent years, and emails that read like spam will be automatically blocked or sent to the junk folder. For starters, make sure every single contact in your mailing list consented to receive emails from you. Otherwise, your email analytics will take a hit, and you run the risk of violating privacy laws.
You should also make sure that the email copy is formatted properly. That means you need to avoid writing words in uppercase and adding too many exclamation marks. Hyperbolic calls to action can also come off as spammy, and filters can flag your marketing emails as spam. Take time to revise and clean up your emails before sending them out.
A final word
You’re not going to become an expert in email marketing overnight. Just like any hobby or endeavor, true mastery only comes from battle-tested experience and repetition. Experiment with different approaches and always check your data to see what works and what doesn’t. Make adjustments to your strategy as you go along. Do something often enough, and eventually, you’ll get better at it.