With 91% of US consumers using email daily, email marketing is a great way to communicate with and engage your customers. Emails are estimated to prompt at least 3 times as many purchases than social media, which is reason enough for you to start email marketing if you haven’t already.
That being said, marketing emails can only be effective if your customers are actually reading them. In this post, we detail three tips on how to get your emails opened and read by as many people as possible.
1. Build an in-house list
First order of business – list building. In order to increase the chances of people reading your emails, send only to those who have given you their email address. Buying email lists and sending to addresses that have been scraped will not help your open rates for one simple reason: recipients who have not actively signed up to your list are extremely unlikely to be interested in what you’re emailing about.
A good way to start building an in-house email list is by adding a email newsletter sign up form to your website. This enables site visitors to give you their email address, whether or not they’ve purchased from you. In order to encourage signs ups to your list, give users an incentive. For example, it could be early access to a promotional sale or free delivery on their first order. If you own an Online Store, ask users after they’ve purchased if they would like to opt-in to your mailing list.
In order to get users to open your emails, your mailings must be relevant to them – that’s where segmentation comes in. The simplest way to find out what your users are interested in is to ask them when they subscribe to your email list. This can be done within your email sign up form or in an email sent after post-sign up. Once you know their interests, you can send them emails catering to their interests. For example, an online store selling clothing could ask whether the customer is male or female and interested in sweaters, shirts, dresses, coats, pants or accessories. After analyzing the information, the store owner could can send relevant emails to users containing those chosen products.
These are some other ways to segment an email list:
- Business category
- Purchase history
Segmentation helps to move away from the “batch and blast” approach, where your entire list receives the same email, and instead moved to a more targeted approach that speaks to the interests of the recipient.
3. Craft a strong subject line
Subject lines are extremely important; in fact, in fact 33% of email recipients open an email based on subject line alone. Similar to headlines, spending time creating good subject line copy is crucial. Crafting copy that encourages a recipient to open an email is made easier once you’ve started segmenting your email list. This goes back to sending relevant emails – once you know what a recipient is interested in, you can then tailor the subject line (and email) to suit those interests.
Here are some other points to consider to help you to write strong subject line copy:
- Length – Try to be descriptive, yet as concise as possible with your subject line. This copy should be under 50 characters in length.
- Personalization - Including personalization in the subject line tends to improve open rates. For example, you could add a recipient’s name or location.
- Avoid “spammy” words and punctuation – Certain words such as “Help,” “Percent off” and “Reminder” have a negative effect open rates. As well as this, try to avoid exclamation marks and overusing of capital letters.
Be sure to test your subject lines as each email list caters to a different audience. For example, conduct split tests on the length of your subject line to see whether a shorter or longer subject line yields higher open rates. Likewise, test out different personalization techniques to see which works best for your audience.
These are our top three tips to get your emails opened. Tell us what tactics you’ve used to increase your email open rates in the comments below.