Email marketing has not been as visible as social media in the recent years but that doesn’t mean that it’s dead. It’s still a very valuable tool for marketers in keeping their audience engaged and promoting their new content and products.
Now ask yourself: are you familiar with the basics of email marketing?
To get you started, I’ve gathered 20 essential email marketing tips. Let’s go!
01. Keep your email lists up to date.
Lists are email marketers most valuable assets. If you don’t take care of your lists and keep them up to date, you can say goodbye to success. Make sure you have an efficient way to attract new subscribers and that you also regularly remove addresses from your list that have hard bounced.
02. Write your subject line according to your audience.
Your audience pretty much determines if your subject line can be pushy or neutral. If you know your audience and they know you – you can be a little bit more aggressive and provocative. Then again, if you are sending your message to a cold list you should be more neutral at first so they don’t mistake you for an amateur spammer.
03. Don’t over promise.
If you make offers in your subject line you should also make sure that you deliver what you’ve promised. There’s nothing worse than building up huge expectations with your subject line and then don’t provide the answer in the content.
04. Avoid trashy words in the subject line.
Again, this depends hugely on your target audience, but words like “FREE” and “OFFER” as well as currency symbols and exclamation marks should be avoided. They do not only appear shady to the reader but they get the attention of spam filters as well.
05. Personalize the content.
Personalization is good but not if you over do it. It’s good to say “Hi, [name]” but usually you don’t have take it further than that. Also, there are people who get disgusted of personalized subject lines. I’m not sure if I like that habit either so avoid it if you can.
06. Engage your audience.
High engagement rates show that your content offers value to the customer. Keep them engaged by offering them quality content regularly. If you write a new blog post or add a new product to your site, make sure that people on your email list are the first to hear about it.
07. Write like you talk.
There’s nothing wrong in being who you are also when you are writing articles. Actually, it makes you seem more like a human and most probably increases engagement rates. Which one would you rather listen to, a senior CEO talking about this months key figures or an enthusiastic SEO expert who uses expressive words, waves his hand in the air and wears a collared shirt with pictures of ducks on it? I know, right…
08. Deliver what you promise.
If you say that by following your step-by-step guide the reader is able to grow their organic traffic by 100% – well they’d better be able to do it. Otherwise, they’ll feel like they’ve been betrayed and never come back. So focus on creating value and, even more, value to you reader.
09. Make it easy to read.
Use subheadings and white space to make your article easy to read. Also, make sure that the paragraphs aren’t too long.
10. Make sure the design is aligned with your message.
If your message is about pursuing happiness the text probably shouldn’t be white on black. If you’re promoting a death metal group you should definitely not make the background pink. The same goes with typefaces you are using. Be sure to align the design with your subject.
11. Know what you want the reader to do next.
- You probably have a goal in mind when you press the “send”-button.
- You don’t want them to just read the message – right?
- You probably want them to click a link or do some other type of action.
Make sure that your message is structured according to your goals. If you want them to click a link, make it visible!
12. Create a killer landing page.
When you have successfully made your reader open the email and click a link, be sure that you have a proper landing page set up. The landing page should be a natural part of the funnel “email open > link click > landing page > (conversion)”. If the link takes the clicker to your front page – don’t be waiting for high conversion rates.
13. Double check that the links work.
Once you press send, there’s no going back and correcting the links. So before you send your message, check that your links are pointing to the right place. Make the pages you are directing the reader to public. If you make a mistake, the only way to correct the mistake is to make a redirect from the link address in the message to the correct destination.
14. Make it mobile friendly.
It goes without saying. Your email should be mobile friendly and optimized for smartphone screens. If it is not – well… just please optimize your email and avoid huge losses in traffic and engagement.
15. Include some images.
Images are always good. They bring the design to life and also make the message more easy to read. However, you don’t want to make your message too image heavy because it has the potential to trigger the spam filters.
16. Make sure there’s a possibility to unsubscribe.
It’s important to give your subscribers the possibility to not receive your letters in case they don’t want them. There’s no way of keeping them once they’ve decided to go. Respect their will!
17. Generate a web version of your email.
Most mailing services offer the possibility to automatically generate a web version of the email. You should do this because, with email clients, the visual elements of the message aren’t always displayed like you meant them to be displayed. With browsers, it’s more unlikely to counter issues like this.
18. Make the message shareable.
You want your message to be spread as wide as possible – right? So why not let the readers do some good to you and do the sharing for you. Include social sharing buttons to your messages and watch how the traffic numbers go up.
19. Check the grammar before you press “send”.
Like said before, there’s no honing your mistakes once you’ve launched your email. So read it for yourself a couple of times and then let someone else read it as well.
20. Measure and optimize.
How to be better at this game? You have to know what to measure, then measure it, analyze the data and optimize your letter according to the results. Experiment with subject lines, button colors, and placements as well as link anchor texts and images. Make simple a/b-tests and hone your letter until it’s perfect!