fAre your email newsletters losing their pizzazz?
Email is the most effective digital marketing channel to connect with your customers. With 85% of adult Internet users on email, it outranks Search Engines and Social Media in popularity. A well-crafted email newsletter can drive traffic to your website, boost sales, and grow your social media following.
If you’re finding your open rates (the percentage of your email recipients who opened your email) or conversion rates (the percentage of your email recipients who completed a desired action like visiting your website or purchasing a product) starting to drop, it may be time to switch up your email marketing strategy.
But this doesn’t mean you have to reinvent the wheel! Most of the businesses already have the basics in place: they have a killer business, they have a subscriber list, and they have ideas for what they want to promote. It’s a simple process of fine-tuning your newsletter to improve the success of your email campaigns.
5 Steps for Reinvigorating Your Email Campaigns
Here are five simple email-marketing changes that can make a big difference:
1. Change The Subject Line
Nobody biting? It could be as simple as your subject line. If you can’t get subscribers to click and open your email, take some time to reevaluate your message to better appeal to your target audience.
I just glanced down my inbox for an example of a subject line I would never click on: “You’ll be saying WOW every time with ShamWow.” I don’t even have to open it. I know what’s in it. I’m not interested in reading an ad.
I might, however, have clicked the email if it had said something like, “ShamWow Ranked Best For Clean Kitchen” because it sounds like a news story and could include a new piece of information for me to take away.
Test different subject lines with A/B Testing in your email marketing platform and monitor how the stats to see which types of subjects your audience responds to.
Here’s another quick tip: A recent Forbes Study found that 56% of brands that used an emoji in their email subject line had a higher open rate than those who did not. Try spicing an existing subject line up by incorporating emojis.
2. Do More Than Sell, Sell, Sell… While Still Selling
Once you can get your subscribers to open your email, it’s time to optimize the body and call-to-actions of your email so readers will complete your desired actions, like making a reservation at your restaurant or buying your product.
It’s critical not to overwhelm your reader with sales pitches or else you’ll just come off as spammy. Give readers an option other than “Click Here To Buy Now!”
These can be additional resources that won’t distract the reader but will add value to your business in their eyes and give them a more well-rounded convincing reason to visit your venue. Then provide a strong call to action.
What does this look like?
Let’s imagine you own a restaurant, for example. You could send your email subscribers a list of the top 5 things to do in the area (offering links for more information). Then remind them that they can top the day off with a nice dinner out. Or send them a coupon for a free dessert with purchase of entrée because they’ve been “such a good customer.” Let them know your pizza won the latest award. Have they tried it? Offer a gift certificate as the perfect gift idea for that upcoming occasion. Give them something for free on their birthday. Remind them that you do kids birthday parties or rehearsal dinners.
Even if most of your subscribers don’t have these needs, they may forward it on to someone who does. Dig deep and learn how to spark interest and create value in the eyes of your customer with relevant newsletter content.
3. Write With Purpose
When you have something to say, say it. If you don’t, don’t! Many email marketing campaigns aren’t reaching their full potential because they are forced or too scheduled.
When you have to pull something together to meet a deadline each week, month, whatever, your content can run a little dry. You might not have much to say, so you end up adding fluff or straight selling. On the contrary, if you have many exciting things going on, but you wait to send them all at once, each might not get the recognition it deserves. And think of the crammed subject line!
Keep your newsletters focused and relevant. Don’t send too often, but don’t send too infrequently. When you have something to announce, announce it immediately. If you are running a special, tell your subscribers about it. You get the idea. Send them to your website to learn more, and make sure you have an enticing landing page and that your contact us page is up to par.
In most relationships, you call when you have something to say, right? It follows, therefore, that you should email your subscribers when you have something to say as well… even if it’s, “We haven’t seen you in a while. Here’s a good reason to stop by…”
4. Redesign Your Email Newsletter Template
If you’ve had the same email template since 2004, it’s probably time you update it. And even if your email template was designed last year, it’s a good idea you give it another check for today’s screens and devices.
49% of all emails are opened on mobile devices. If your images are taking too long to load on an iPhone, your email could end up straight in the trash. If your call-to-action buttons are too small for a thumb to tap, you just lost that click to your website.
These days, you don’t need to know HTML to code an attractive, responsive email newsletter template. Email newsletter platforms like Robly or MailChimp have easy customizable drag and drop templates that create fantastic and modern email newsletter templates optimized for mobile users.
5. Test Emails Are Your New Best Friend
Oops, that image didn’t come through, and you just sent your newsletter to thousands of subscribers. Oops, that was the wrong link, and now you are confusing clickers. Oops, that was the wrong date, and now you have to send a correction email.
Mishaps are a fact of life, but many times you can spare yourself some time and embarrassment by simply sending yourself a test message first. Open up email accounts (even if only for testing) on Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo!, etc. so you can see how your message will display in each account. And then open the email on a desktop computer and then a mobile device. You would be very surprised at the differences!
Also, double-check dates, times, locations, other information, spelling, links… anything your message contains… to ensure accuracy and trust with your readers. Because if your subscribers are constantly getting correction emails, they probably won’t be opening your emails in the future…
Capture Your Subscribers’ Attention & Increase Conversions
By following these three simple email-marketing strategies, you can turn your organization’s email newsletters around and start seeing results.
Need help spicing up your email marketing?
Do you think you can improve on how your company uses email? Ultimately, if you’re unhappy with the success of your email newsletters, it’s probably time to invest in Email Marketing.
We here at Mannix Marketing are email-marketing experts. Our team of email marketing strategists will not only assist with Email Newsletter account setup through MailChimp, but we’ll will work with you to create fresh, punchy marketing content that informs your subscribers AND improve open rates and conversion rates!
Editor’s note: This content was originally published in 2009 but has been updated as of May 2019.