There is no denying that email marketing is a huge part of digital marketing and advertising a business, but successful email marketing relies on people opening your emails. If the emails aren’t being opened, email marketing is unlikely to bring in leads, sales and conversions. This isn’t always easy to achieve, as many recipients ignore emails from unfamiliar senders or those they deem to be irrelevant. This is why it’s important to boost your email open rates as much as possible.
Email open rates indicate the level of engagement that your audience has with your emails. It shows whether recipients find your subject line and sender name compelling enough to open the email and read its content, or if they delete it as soon as it’s arrived. Higher open rates generally imply that your email content and subject lines are resonating with your audience, and that a high number of people are seeing what you have to offer. Below, we have listed some of the key ways to improve your email open rates.
Engaging Subject Lines
When you are trying to improve your email open rates, you need to think of everything, and this includes things that aren’t part of the main body of text. The subject line is the first thing that the recipient sees, so it needs to grab their attention straight away. A subject line needs to catch their eye, and it needs to be clear, concise and engaging. One of the most common mistakes is getting the tone wrong, such as being overly aggressive or sales-y. It’s also common for businesses to misrepresent the contents, which sometimes leaves recipients feeling fooled and tricked.
More Relevant Content
Though you might think that your content is useful and relevant, recipients will stop reading if they aren’t interested in what you have to say. You need to make sure that your emails are relevant to them, and the content provides something of value. This could be a solution to a problem, an answer to a question, a discount code or an interesting thought piece. You need to make sure that the content is what they signed up for. You could run a poll to see what people want more of, and then tailor your email content accordingly.
Segment Your List
It’s tempting – and let’s face it, sometimes a lot easier – to send the same email to everyone on your email marketing list, but this is rarely the right way to go about things. Even though you are bound to have a specific demographic or target market to aim for, everyone is different, and they want different things from an email. It’s a good idea to maintain separate lists for different types of subscribers, and then tailor different emails to them. Change the content, subject line and approach depending on what’s likely to work. Instead of sending identical emails to everyone, group similar subscribers together, and tailor your approach to their interests, preferences and niche.
Choose Your Time
A lot of businesses make the mistake of sending emails at various times of day, without giving any thought to the times that work best for their email marketing goals. Emails at different times get different open rates, so you need to take the time to find what days and times work best for you. For example, sending emails in the early morning can be effective as many people check their emails the moment they wake up. Towards the end of the workday can also be a good time to send emails, as many people have more time to focus on their inbox before leaving work. Some businesses opt to send emails early in the afternoon, which can be effective if you are targeting people who have returned to work after lunch, and might have some free time to catch up on emails. Between 9 am and 11 am is another popular time to consider, which is when a lot of people have settled into their work routine and are more likely to check their emails, or when parents are back from the school run and checking their inbox. You can try different days and times to see what works best.
As we mentioned above, emails need to be tailored to recipients, and personalisation is a key part of this. Personalising the subject line with the recipient’s name or a reference to their interests and needs will grab their attention. It makes a recipient feel as though you are communicating with them on an individual basis, rather than a wider customer base. Personalisation will make them more likely to open your emails, and therefore make them more likely to engage with what you have to say. There is an aspect of feeling like a ‘chosen’ customer or client, rather than a random name in a long list of contacts.
Tracking your email open rates over time will help you to evaluate the effectiveness of your email marketing strategies and campaigns. By monitoring changes in open rates, you can identify trends, measure the impact of different techniques and make decisions that are driven by data. This will allow you to optimise your future email marketing efforts, knowing that what you are doing is likely to be successful.
By analysing open rates, you will have a better understanding of how different segments of your audience respond to your emails marketing campaigns. By separating your email list based on various factors – such as demographics, past engagement or preferences – you can tailor your emails and email content to specific segments as a way to boost open rates.
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