Sending regular email newsletters to customers is a great way to promote new products or services and generate repeat traffic to your website. The Radicati Group reported that business email will account for over 132 billion emails sent and received per day by the end of 2017. With people receiving so many emails each day, it’s getting more difficult to cut through the noise and engage with customers. In this post, we explore tactics you can adopt to increase customer engagement with your email marketing.
Including content customers are interested in will increase the open and clickthrough rates of your email campaigns. The best way to know what your customers are interested in is to look at past campaigns you’ve sent. Most Email Service Providers will provide open rate and clickthrough reports. See which campaigns had the best results, and what specific content pieces customers engaged with the most. Once you have this insight, you can do a better job at featuring that type of content. At Yola, we have found that our users like to know about new features we add to our product offering. As a result, we try to feature these every month in our newsletter.
If you’re creating your first email campaign, make an educated guess as to what you think will be useful to your readers or simply ask them what they’d like to read from you. Then fine tune your content through trial and error, checking the data after each send. The more campaigns you have under your belt, the easier it will get.
As with your website, including strong calls-to-action in your email newsletters will encourage users to engage, take action and click through from your email campaigns. Although the content of newsletters may be more informational, you should still encourage recipients to take action – whether it be to learn more about your business/product/service/new feature or to provide you with information that may be helpful for your business. To give an example, in each Yola monthly newsletter we encourage recipients to take a short survey one question survey. This information is very helpful as it lets us know what topics people consider important, what difficulties they may be having and how we can improve our offering to our users.
The design of your email newsletter is critical for customer engagement. As mentioned, having clear, bold CTAs will encourage click-throughs. In addition to obvious CTAs, you should consider how your email will look on a cell phones and tablets. Reports indicate that 62% of emails are opened on mobile devices, making it extremely important to ensure your email newsletter renders well on-the-go.
Here are a few things you can do to improve the effectiveness of your email campaigns if they’re being viewed on a cell phone:
- Keep the subject line short – With Apple’s iPhone email app, only 30 characters can be seen within the subject line. As a result, it’s a good idea to keep your subject line brief or to lead with the most important information first.
- Use a mobile friendly layout – Make the email easy to read on a small screen by using a single column layout, thus reducing sideways scrolling. In addition, one column newsletters tend to have a higher click-through-rate than multi-column newsletters. One of the best ways to ensure a positive mobile email experience is by using responsive email design, which will render the email differently depending on the size of the screen the email is opened on.
- Increase the size of CTAs – Touch screen smart phones have made clicking on specific sections of emails more challenging. As a result, improve your design to cater for mobile viewers and make the CTAs a minimum of 22 x 44 pixels in size, making them easier to click.
Finally, making your emails personal and catering the content as much as possible to each subscriber is a great way to increase engagement. To do this, you should collect data on your subscribers. For example, find out which products they’re interested in, which you could find out from past purchases or browsing data. Personal or demographic information can also be useful to tailor your email messages. The more relevant your content is to the recipient, the more likely they are to engage with it. In the simplest form, just adding a recipients name into the subject line can improve open rates by 4.7% over the average.
Implementing some, if not all, of these tactics will help to improve customer engagement with your newsletters. In turn it will have a positive impact on your business in terms of repeat visitors and conversions.