Recently I’ve run across a few business people that think that social media marketing has over taken email marketing and that email marketing is a thing of the past. Nothing could be further from the truth, though, all you have to do to verify this is to visit many of these so called social media experts and see that they still utilize email marketing as a primary marketing channel.
Email is still the best way to build relationships with your target audience and make sales in a structured way. It is all a case of using common sense and utilizing email marketing best practices, Let’s look at a few of them.
Set a Goal for Every Email
Don’t send out an email just for the sake of sending one out, try to have a clear purpose in mind. It will either offer information, be promotional, or try to get the audience to do something else.
Match the Call to Action to the Goal
Every email should have a clear call to action (CTA). If you are offering information, for example, your CTA can be “Click to read more.” If you’re trying to make a sale, your call to action would be a Buy Now link. Want them to complete a poll or survey? Ask them. Don’t make people guess at what you want them to do.
This should be fully automated by your email marketing platform if you enter the right code. Studies show it works well in subject lines.
Create a Great Subject Line for Every Email
Even the best email in the world will never get read unless it has a great subject line that gets people to open it. When crafting a subject line, think of it like a newspaper or press release headline. It should grab attention, make the reader curious, and offer a promise inside the email that all will be revealed.
Have a Strong Opening Paragraph Related to the Subject Line
Continue with the theme in the subject line in order to lure them further in, so they will read the rest of the email. Start delivering on the promise made in the subject line.
Keep It Short and Simple
Many people are pressed for time and can’t afford to wade through a long-winded email. Communicate the real value of your email within a couple of paragraphs.
Make Your First Line and Paragraph Really Count
In many email viewers, you can see the sender, subject line, and several words of the first sentence of the email, including the “Dear Jane” part. Try to write tightly in the first paragraph to “front load” your information, or ask a question that will also get them curious and want to read more.
One formula to try is the Six Ws of journalism. Space has always been tight in printed newspapers, so journalists were taught to get all of the most valuable information into the first paragraph whenever possible. The Six Ws are:
What happened, when, who did it happen to, and so on. Tell a tight story that will resonate with your audience.
Pay Attention to Timing
Mornings are a good time to send emails, ideally around 6 am. Evenings can be a good time as well, from 7 pm onwards. Your email marketing platform should allow you to mail out in relation to the time zone of each recipient.
Ask for the Share
Don’t be shy about suggesting they might wish to forward your email to a friend.
Track Your Results
Check your opens, clicks, and actions taken for every email you send out, to use email as an effective marketing tool.