Despite all the attention and love that new generations tools such as Social Media and Content Marketing have received in the last few years, it is hard to find any reputable expert who’ll disregard E-mail as possibly the most powerful weapon in a company’s arsenal.
E-mail is still an amazingly effective way for businesses to reach to their clients, create engagement and ultimately increase sales…if your e-mails are being read, then you have won half the battle of selling.
For an e-mail to convert and achieve its purpose, it has to actually be opened by those receiving it. Given the disgustingly high amount of mails we receive these days and the fact most people’s inboxes are messier than a teenager’s bedroom it is no surprise that open rates is a widely discussed metric these days.
However, there are a few very easy strategies that you can implement right here, right now, in order to get your e-mails in front of your contact’s eyes and capture their intrigue:
1. Use slightly long Subject Lines that still generate curiosity
Online marketing firm “Get Response” decided to analyze a staggering 375 million e-mails to find out what made the most opened ones special – and they noticed something interesting when it came to the subject line length:
The e-mails that contained more than 61 words in their subject line had the highest open rates with an average 12.38%. Though short and sweet lines may seem punchy and effective when we write them, we’ve got to understand our readers and potential customers don’t have the same things in mind as we do.
Since they know less than we do about what we are offering (and they have a bazillion e-mails sitting in their inbox right below ours), a seemingly catchy and cool line such as ‘Act Now or Regret it Tomorrow’ will fail to create any curiosity. Beef up the subject lines with some more specific information without giving out too much and you’re likely to see your open rates increase in an instant.2
2. Nail your timing
The time of the day someone receives an e-mail can play a huge role in whether or not it’s being opened and read. Multiple studies have found out some consistency regarding what the optimal timing is: weekday afternoons seem to be the winner.
The best strategy would be to analyze the open rates of your previous e-mails and A/B test different days and times to come up with patterns that will suit your list best. Of course, if your client base is international it could be a good idea to create different groups within your list based on their time zones.
Agile CRM’s A/B split testing tool can help you do this in a way that’s easy and effective.
3. Write as if you were talking to an individual
The jury is still to be out on whether customizing e-mail subject lines with the recipient’s name is an effective strategy – but what is sure for a fact is that nobody wants to read something that screams ‘Dear Sir/Madam: I’ve just been sent to 500k people, I sincerely hope someone clicks on this link’.
Assuming a degree of familiarity and proximity to our list is a winning move – so throw that corporate hat away and talk to your readers as you would to a friend.
4. Use numbers in your Subject Lines
No matter if we’re writing an e-mail, a blog post or an article: it has consistently been proven that using digits is more effective than writing the whole number: writing 23 will outperform typing twenty-three in pretty much 99 out of 100 times (see what we did there?).
The reasoning behind this is very simple and it has been a staple guideline since the 90s: when reading any sort of text online, the majority of people don’t read every word from top to bottom – they instead scan the text for relevant ideas and parts that summarize the whole content. Including numbers as digits is a great strategy to make readers actually pay attention to what we have sent out.
5. Be consistent
Once you have chosen an e-mail frequency and the timing for them it would be wise to stick to it instead of randomly sending more/less e-mails at various times of the day.
Maintain a certain regularity and your readers will not only be more likely to open your e-mails, but they’ll even be looking forward to them.
6. Create Quality Content
If your contact think of your content as interesting, engaging and useful, your open rates will improve leaps and bounds. If, on the other hand, you’re only sending information they could easily find elsewhere — or worse, all promotions, all the time — your messages will end up in the trash bin without even a second glance. So give your contacts a reason to open that email and look forward to being informed.
I hope you find these tips useful and get started on writing emails that are opened and actioned upon.