So how can an email stand out?
Talking to the business side of things, the best one can do, is think like the client and take into consideration the potentially hundreds of emails, that customers will be receiving each month.
With emails piling up in their inbox, what’s the incentive to make them click on your message? And once it’s opened, what’s their incentive to keep reading?
Emails still play a central part in marketing, but with more and more businesses onboard, it pays to know the marketing techniques that are actually working in order to connect with your customers. There are four primary tricks you need to take into account:
1. Make it as personal as you can
This is probably the most important tip, but also the hardest. Sending a more personal email helps your business connect with your subscribers by making them feel valued and appreciated as a customer. But with potentially thousands of subscribers, how can you go about this? Some food for thought:
Send out a welcome email. Once they sign up, welcome them to the company. This helps you establish your brand and clarify what type of emails they are to expect. This has also reminded them what they have signed up to and gives them the chance to modify their email preferences eg. if they want emails less frequently. It will also leave a good impression.
- Make sure people know what they’re signing up to. There are varying ways people can sign up to your emails: through your website, on a signup form, at live events, on other landing pages etc. Sometimes they may not even realise they will be receiving emails, so make sure they know what they are signing up to.
Create different email subscription lists. Most people are going to end up a subscriber based on a signup form of some sort. From this you can gather what type of person it is you are communicating with. Send content and services catered to their needs. Eg. A mature aged client will be reading and interacting differently with content then a young adult, or a mother.
Respond to your clients based on your engagement metrics. The more emails on your list does not necessarily mean the more opens. Many people may ignore them completely. Monitor how your engagement metrics to assess how people are actually responding to your messages. If you can notice users are not clicking through to your content, either send them emails less frequency or direct them through to your preference centre to allow them to change their preferences.
Reward your long standing clients. Over time people will either commit to your brand, or lose interest. Those who have stayed strong to your company are the people you can most depend on. If you want to assess the progress of your company, survey these people. Similarly award them for their dedication. Give them better discounts or special offers to maintain their commitment.
2. Get the design right
The appearance and layout is one of the first things the client is going to view. The design needs to fit your brand, maintain legibility and most importantly, get your message across. The easiest way to go about this, is simplicity. However, there’s a few things you must always consider:
Appropriate colour coordination. The colours you use should both attract the reader and maintain the theme of your brand. You don’t want anything too bright, since you’re not screaming for their attention (they’ve already opened the email) but you do want to use colour to maintain subtle interest. Nothing over the top, but something to add a little fun to your content.
Integrate images and text. A straight plain text is tiring to look at, let alone read. Integrate appropriate images throughout the text that will not only break up your content, but allow the reader to quickly view in order to have a rough idea on what you’re trying to communicate.
Make sure it is compatible across varying platforms. Remember today people are checking emails from their mobile phones, their iPads, their laptops and you wouldn’t want an image covering your text as they scroll through on their mobile phone.
Utilise your space. An email shouldn’t be too long, but just long enough to share what you need to communicate. There’s no need to squish the content into a tight space, but ensure there is enough white on the page to keep it comfortable to view.
3. Create read-worthy content
At the end of the day, if they’ve clicked to open your email, seen neatly presented information, they’re going to keep reading. But if the content isn’t interesting, they’re not going to get far. So how can you keep your work interesting to hundreds of different subscribers. A few things to consider are:
Have an interesting and direct subject line. This is the very first thing your client will see. You want them to open the email and not automatically send it to their spam or trash box. Keep it real to the content you’re providing, but also keep it interesting.
Get to the point quickly. With multiple distractions surrounding the online world, people will quickly move on from one page to another. You’re sending out your email for a reason, so get straight to the point. Remember you always have the option to link them to your website where they can read into further detail anyway.
Promote an online contest. This is a great way to assess whether your clients are interacting with your content as well as encouraging them to keep clicking through. An online contest creates greater conversation about your brand and keeps people interesting with a potential prize.
Call the reader to action: Apart from a contest, each email should ask the responder to do something. This might simply be clicking through to your website, comment on a post or check out a new item you’re promoting.
This refers to the frequency and timing of your emails.
- The right time and day. This is going to differ slightly depending on your audience. Generally people aren’t going to want to read many emails on the weekend, but by checking your engagement metrics you can assess when your clients have opened your emails. With this knowledge you can post out your message on these particular days.
- Maintain consistency. Everyone likes stability. It’s comfortable. Since you know when your clients are opening your emails you should consistently and regularly send them your content on these days. With regularity your clients begin to expect your emails and out of habit will open them.
- Appropriate frequency. You don’t want to send email too often, but neither do you want your client to forget about you. It’s all about finding this balance. If you’re sending out emails too often, people will get tired of constantly hearing about every new little thing.
There’s a lot to keep in mind. However, as your user base grows it will get easier, not harder. You will know how to read engagement metrics, know what works and what doesn’t and establish long standing clients.
Is there anything we may have missed? Comment below and let us know!