3 Tips for Perfecting Your Email Marketing Strategy
Despite the advent of social media and instant messaging, email remains one of the most powerful online communication platforms today – especially when it comes to digital marketing. According to Smart Insights, email conversion rates are higher than social and search engine marketing combined.
To add to its appeal, email marketing is highly cost-effective and allows you to directly engage with your most switched-on users to generate business. For every $1 you spend on email marketing, you can expect a staggering average return of $38.
However, everyone’s inbox is constantly inundated with offers, promotions, news and events, making it difficult for businesses to cut through the noise and speak to their prospects. For context, an average office worker receives 121 emails a day, making it easy for your email to get lost at the bottom of a list of other promotions.
The solution to making an impact on your audience is to take a strategic approach to email marketing to ensure that your efforts are seen. Here, we discuss three of the most effective ways to craft powerful emails and boost your return on investment.
1. Keep it simple
The first step to creating a successful email marketing campaign is to know precisely what it is you want to achieve. Are you trying to get customers to buy products from your eCommerce store? Do you want to inform them of an upcoming sale or promotion? Are you motivating them to sign up for a new service that you’re offering?
The entirety of your email should reflect your established goal while remaining as simple and clear as possible. Sending an email that’s packed full of information is unlikely to hold your audience’s attention. According to research by Jakob Nielsen, people will only read approximately 20% of the text on a page.
To counter this, imagine you’re writing for a busy person skimming over their emails on the commute to or from work, or scrolling through their inbox over a cup of coffee. You want copy that’s short and punchy while still being engaging. Don’t use long paragraphs or sentences– instead, break your text up with subheadings and bullets, allowing for easily digestible, bite-sized pieces of information.
Finally, make your call-to-action obvious. Include a button with a clear call-to-action in your email, or use a noticeable link. If you plan to use more than one call-to-action, ensure that all your email links lead to the same place, which further reinforces the idea of having a singular goal.
Take a look at this prime example from Airbnb. This email is short, sharp and to the point. Users can easily skim through the information, which is complemented by clean, visually appealing graphics and concluded with a pronounced call-to-action button.
2. Create a subject line they can’t resist
47% of email recipients decide whether or not to open an email based on its subject line. There’s no point in crafting powerful copy if your users don’t open your email in the first place. Unless you have a loyal, established following who open every email from you, an engaging subject line is how you get people interested; it’s what motivates your subscribers to click on your message in their inbox.
A subject line has to do several things simultaneously: intrigue the reader, convey the purpose of the email, reflect your brand’s personality, and prompt the reader to take action. Writing an effective subject line can sometimes be the hardest part of writing an email.
So how exactly do you write the perfect subject line? Well, you can approach it from several angles, such as:
Instilling a sense of urgency
Subject lines that include words like ‘urgent’, ‘important’ or ‘breaking’ are proven to increase clickthroughs. Achieve this by stating an offer is valid for a limited time only or saying that x product is close to selling out.
Example: “[WEEKEND ONLY] Get this NOW before it’s gone…” (Digital Marketer)
Piquing your user’s curiosity
Ask a question in your subject line that can only be answered by opening the email, or share something unusual so that your reader just has to know what it means.
Example: “A faster donkey” (The Hustle)
Providing a solution to a problem
Determine what your user’s pain points are, then craft a subject line that promises to fix their issue.
Example: “Your beauty issues, solved” (Sephora)
Retargeting your customer
A highly effective way of reminding a user that they’ve failed to complete an action is to give them something that motivates them to return to it.
Example: “The price dropped for something in your cart” (Target)
Another important thing to take note of is to ensure that your subject line is relevant to the email copy. Don’t make a clickbait subject line to lure your subscribers in. While this may drive engagement temporarily, it will ultimately result in your subscribers losing trust in you and decrease your clickthrough rate.
3. Make it mobile-friendly
Optimising email content for mobile devices is absolutely essential if you want to boost your clickthrough rate and drive engagement. A massive 88% of users actively check email on their phones, so failing to optimise for mobile would mean losing the majority of your audience.
When creating an email for mobile, keep your subject line short. According to ReturnPath, a typical desktop subject line displays approximately 60 characters while a mobile device shows only 25 to 30 on average. Use larger fonts for ease of readability, and make sure your call-to-action is clearly visible. Stick to single column layouts and use images sparingly, as many email readers will often block images by default.
An oft-overlooked benefit of mobile is that you essentially get a second subject line known as pre-header text. This is the short description below your title on the main screen of an email reader, and can function as another “teaser” to further grab your reader’s attention. This is the perfect place to outline what your email is about and tell your subscriber what they can expect to see if they click on your email.
A final point to remember about optimising for mobile is that your viewers will only see a segment of your email due to the size of a smartphone’s screen. Be strategic in your design and include your most important takeaway “above the fold”, where your readers can easily see what the email is about without scrolling down.
An example of a succinct email outlining all its main points above the fold.
The next time that you go to craft an email to your subscribers, make sure to keep these three simple tips in mind; we guarantee that you’ll start seeing tangible results in your clickthrough rates before you know it.
If you’re feeling inspired, check out our blogs on How to Measure the Effectiveness of Your Content Marketing Strategy and 5 Digital Video Trends That Will Boost Your Brand’s Engagement. Happy marketing!