10 Tips for Better Marketing Emails
Of all the components of the marketing mix, email marketing is perhaps the one that’s come along furthest. It has evolved into a fast, cost-effective and highly responsive tool for marketing, sales, and customer relationship teams.
For most industries, email marketing is key to business success. Doing it effectively can have a direct, positive impact not only on sales, but also on customer engagement and loyalty. So, how can an organization improve its emailing practice? Here’s a list of do’s and don’ts:
- Make it relevant. Like most of us, your readers probably receive hundreds of emails every day. Each morning they go through their inbox and choose what’s for reading and what’s for the junk folder, or prioritize those emails that appeal to them most. Content that’s relevant to the audience, which is short and punny but well-written, is more likely to be read. If your audience is large and diverse, do some segmentation and adjust your content to match each group’s interests and needs.
- Make it interactive. Having your emails read is good; keeping your readers engaged is great. Emails are not pieces of paper, they can open a window to a lot more. Give your readers the opportunity to explore: include links to rich content (videos are very popular), refer them to resources and provide a call-to-action to make your email more exciting (and your audience more worked up!)
- Be human. Even when it’s generated automatically, the email is still a communication stream and, like any other type of communication, it can bring together all the characteristics of human interaction. Emails come packed with expectations. People expect your emails to follow the usual norms and principles of social interactions. It’s essential to keep in mind that your audience is made up of real people, so be friendly, be candid, and use normal language.
- Proofread before sending. If you are anything like me, you tend to tune out after the first misspelled word. Spelling mistakes and poor grammar can be frustrating (very frustrating!) and, let’s be honest, they make your emails look like spam (and your organization totally unreliable.) Avoiding proofreading when in a hurry can be tempting, but it’s precisely when you’re in a hurry that you need it most.
- Ask for feedback. No matter how good you are, there’s always room for improvement. By asking your readers for feedback you can maintain a healthy, open, two-way communication between your organization and your target audience, while showing that you are willing to adjust and cater to their needs. Bonus: collecting feedback will help you remain relevant to your readers’ needs and interests.
- Complicate things. Whether in content or your call-to-action, clarity and brevity are important. Nobody likes long, never-ending emails, or confusing tech jargon. As with any other form of communication, messages are more likely to be grasped when they are simple, clear and to the point. People have neither the time nor the inclination to read the same email for hours, and they shouldn’t have to refer to a dictionary to get through a newsletter!
- Use spam trigger words. “No disappointment! 100% satisfied! Limited time only! Call now!” Sure, some phrases might help get your readers’ attention – that is, if the email ever reaches the inbox! Phrases that look like spam are likely to trigger spam filters. However, even if your email makes it to the inbox, the open rate can still be negatively affected if you use such phrases. Ask yourself: who wants to open and read emails that look like spam?
- Write in block capitals. DON’T SHOUT AT PEOPLE. It’s not polite and it can make people feel intimidated or defensive. Your emails are supposed to help establish a good rapport with your customers and prospects, not push them over the edge.
- Over do it. When it comes to email marketing, less can be more. The frequency of your emails is as important as the quality of the content. Define a realistic schedule for your repeat emails, or send an email when you have actually something worthy to say, something that can be of value to your audience.
- Make it hard for recipients to unsubscribe. People do change their minds, and there’s really no point in keeping a list of people who are not interested in what you have to say. Make it easy for your readers to opt-out. If you don’t, you may end up on a blacklist!