Our inbox is just about the only thing we – internet users – have control over in this digital wild west. We get to choose who has access, what they say when they’re there, and if they bug us, BOOM, they’re outta there. It’s like our digital home and we expect our guests to behave while there.
So when someone invites us to their digital home, we need to approach it with the same respect we’d expect from our visitors. The fact that you even got invited is kind of a big deal. Now that you’re there, you’ve got to find a way to be respectful, but heard at the same time because how else are they going to get to know you?
On average, open rates for email marketing are 32%. That open percentage represents a healthy and nurtured list. If you’ve been ignoring your list, your list does not fall under that category. But there’s still time for you to improve your open rate and boost the health of your list. Here’s a great go-to strategy that’ll help you write engaging content, attention-getting subject lines, and how to format emails without looking spammy!
The Written Word Is Always Important – especially in emails.
When you sit down to draft your newsletter, picture a close friend sitting across the table from you. Now pretend you’re writing that newsletter for that friend. The more personal you make the tone of the newsletter, the better it will convert. Make people feel like you are talking to them rather than at them makes them feel bonded to you, the business owner. You can do this with a more casual tone and word choice, but leave out the inside jokes here – you still want them to understand what you’re saying.
Business is all about relationships, which makes nurturing relationships through email marketing your top priority. Don’t be afraid to get to know your audience, invite them to take a specific action, and personalize your message whenever possible.
If someone is generous enough to hand over their email address, be generous to them. Every email should not be trying to close a sale. If you’ve been around here for a while, you know the importance of the know, like, and trust factor. The same rules apply to your emails and newsletters! So give subscribers your best ideas, tips, and advice.
Nurturing vs. Nature
That definitely does not apply to your list. If you leave it alone, in “nature” it will shrivel up and die. Emailing your list frequently and strategically ensures that when you are ready to offer a product or service, you’ll have a warm audience ready to work with you. One thing that my team specializes in is creating beautiful newsletters for our clients that are personal, unique, and informative to warm up their subscribers. The goal is to take our clients’ brand and open conversations through email marketing. Going straight to the sale doesn’t typically work, so implementing a nurture strategy is just as important as developing a product or program launch.
Boosting Your Metrics
To improve your email marketing open and delivery rates, your subscribers must open the email. That’s a given. So give them a reason to open it!
Here’s a hot tip for you – use the subscriber’s name in the subject line, and make the content inside very conversational. It’s a much more casual approach that’ll boost your engagement. Mailchimp, ActiveCampaign, Keap, and all of the major email marketing platforms have the option of using a merge tag to address each person by their first name. Check your forms and make sure you are collecting the first name on your website opt-in.
Subject lines should be short and engaging. Everyone needs a little inspiration once in a while, and this webpage is a good one to bookmark for the future (or now).
Once you’ve got your subject line squared away, let’s talk about the quality of your content. The words inside actually affect delivery rates. Your newsletter or mass email does not have to include graphics, because it could be flagged as spam. Don’t worry, whatever major email marketing software you use should tell you whether it passes the spam test. Or, you could use simple text and not worry about it. Here’s another hot tip I personally use in my business – I email using simple text because it gives me higher open rates and better delivery!
Believe it or not, timing is important when you’re sending emails. The best time of day to send your email is around 11 am. Usually by 11 am, everyone has addressed their most important tasks of the day and they are sitting down for a break. Somewhere between 10 am and 11:30 am should be perfect.
Finally, be sure your emails are mobile-friendly. I know I’m not the only one who checks their email from their phone while lying in bed. A beautifully crafted email on your laptop will look totally different on your phone screen. If you’re not sure what it might look like when opened on a mobile phone, send a test to your inbox to double-check the appearance before you schedule your broadcasts.
If you give careful attention to these best practices, your cozy emails will get you invited back into your subscribers’ digital homes. The more they get to know you, the more they will be compelled to stick around and buy, or maybe even become your number one fan. So what do you think — can I come over again?
Lisa M Gale Digital Marketing helps service professional business owners improve their online presence and visibility to attract new clients. We develop systems and processes to improve digital marketing efforts and help entrepreneurs reach their business goals. Download your Digital Marketing Made Simple for free here >>