If you want to make your emails more likely to be of genuine use to your business, then you need to know where to start and how to put together convincing emails. Here’s how you do exactly that:
1. Meeting Basic Spam Rules
One of the first and most important decisions that you can make is to look at meeting all spam regulations. You need to be able to compliant with CAN-SPAM, which stands for ‘Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing’ and is very important. Ignore at your own peril.
It was passed in 2003 and is a cornerstone of how sites work, particularly those that have customers in the U.S. It’s a law that helps to make sure that all commercial and email messages can be stopped, essentially. If the customer insists that you stop bothering them, then you must do so.
To do this, you need to have:
- A valid postcode and physical postal address that can be contacted to initiate the end of contact.
- You need to make it easy for them to opt-out, with a link in the bottom of the email to opt-out.
- You need to be very clear in who you are, with no vagueness as to who you are, who the email is for and who its aimed at.
- You also have no right to sell off or transfer their email address to any other listing.
- Start off with the above, contacting a legal body if you need assistance making sure you meet CAN-SPAM rulings. Deal with this as a priority, then move on to our next tip.
By falling foul of any the above points, you’re increasing the chance that your email will be flagged as spam, which will push down on your open rate and CTR. And if you’re not careful, you get in trouble either because of these rules or because of GDPR (depending on where your site is based). GDPR is a kitty that has claws; if you don’t properly get a customer’s consent to email them, you could be facing a fine of millions of pounds.
2) Quick Responses, Authentic Writing
Next up, you should make sure that all new contacts or customers are contacted within a 24-hour spell of signing up. When someone has just joined, they’ll anticipate contact within a working day, either to confirm their new account details or to get started with their newsletter subscription.
E-mail them to thank them for signing up and use this moment to introduce yourself personally. You are you, the owner of the company. You aren’t posting as the company, as that’s very impersonal and is a great way to put someone off using your service further.
Instead, if you write as yourself, you come across as far more humane. You should set up an automated platform that sends a personalised message to each new subscriber as soon as they sign up. A failure to do so will make it very hard for them to feel like you are interested (believe it or not, this is something that plenty of businesses still fail to do!). A canned response from ‘the company’ is deeply impersonal and not very likely to get you far whatsoever, though, so try and strike a balance in your template.
Above all, avoid a late response and an impersonal response, and you’ll make them more likely to look out for future messages.
3) Enticing Opening Lines
One of the best tricks that you can use is a very powerful summary of what you have to offer. The first 50 or so characters are visible before opening an email. Starting with some generic waffle is likely to leave your email unopened, because nobody’s going to get what it’s about when they see it in their inbox!
Instead, your primary goal should be to have a clear and enticing subject line. This should then be followed up with a small line of text that sums up what you are offering. If you don’t set a specific preview up, then the email just grabs the first bit of text from the email.
This offers you a chance to make them want to click. Preview text is very powerful and it does help to make it much easier to connect with the reader. A preview text telling them that within is a 20% off coupon is much more likely to get them than the ‘Hey NAME – it’s me again! …’ that your email actually starts with.
You want to be personal, but to get them to open the email you need to be specific about why opening it is worth their time. Entice them with captivating opening lines and watch your CTR and open rates improve with consistency. The good news is that email automation can help you personalise emails with names, and even help you segment your email lists, in no time at all!
4) Short and Sweet Emails
The last solution is one you may have heard before, but is absolutely imperative to good open rates. You need to make your emails short, sweet and very much to the point. Nobody has all that much time these days, and you need to be ready to help them get over that problem by making your email to the point.
Some small business owners use their email marketing to try out their ‘budding’ writing skills. Don’t try and sell some comedy sketch or some fictitious story to sell what you’re selling. Keep it simple, keep it captivating and make it very simple. Time is precious, so don’t go for a long-winded email. Not only are longer emails likely to get red-flagged for spam, they tend to make a dreary read for the customer.
A concise email is much more likely to give them what they are looking for. Want to sell the customer with a story? Then link them to a landing page that sells the story, instead! Using the above, you can easily make sure that your emails are more practical, more concise and more methodical than ever before. You just make it much easier to develop comprehensive and exciting email content in a short and simple space of time – great, right?
Email open rates, and especially your click through rate, are the absolute mainstays of your email marketing campaign. They’re the metrics by which you’ll know whether you succeed or whether you fail. But with the above points in mind- and plenty of A/B testing ahead of you- you’ll be able to improve your strategy in no time. Get to it!