In an era where people check their emails an average of 74 times a day, neglecting emails as a marketing tool is a huge missed opportunity. It's important however to remember that landing into a person's inbox is somewhat of an intimate intrusion which should not be taken lightly. Assuming you are not a spammer (please don't be), an email should be sent between consenting sides. If a person trusts you by opting in to your mailing list and allowing you do contact them, don't abuse that approval. Make them happy and eager to receive your emails. In this post I'll try to point the main things you should take into consideration when preparing a marketing email.
1. Always have one goal in mind
When emailing a prospect or client, think of the one goal you'd like to achieve by sending this email and construct your email around that goal.
Remember this - clicks and open rates are not goals!
Think about it, when running a PPC campaign – your goal is not to get people to click on the ad and arrive on your landing page. Rather it is to take some sort of action such as subscribing to a webinar. Why look at it any different when sending an email? Clicks are worthless if they don't lead a specific goal. They are a good metric for measuring the success of your emails but they are definitely not an end goal.
Examples of relevant goals:
- Downloading an offer (ebook, onepager, guide etc)
- Requesting a consultation meeting
- Starting a free trial
- Donwloading a case study
**The exception to this rule: Newsletters can definitely have multiple goals
2. Design for mobile
According to HubSpot, more than half of email users (who doesn't use emails these days) open their emails directly from their phone. Understanding this requires important adjustments:
- Always make sure your emails are adjusted to mobile
- Place your CTA above the fold
- Don't use fonts smaller than 14pt
- As people will be clicking with their fingers, your CTAs should be at least the size of an average thumb - 44X44 pixels
3. Personalize, establish trust and nurture leads
"A person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language"
Remember, you are writing to a human being on the other side (not an object you are trying to get something out of). Put yourself in your prospects shoes. What interrupts you. What emails are you happy to receive. Try to learn as much as you can about your buyer personas. Use analytics tools to learn about their stage in the buyers journey and adjust the content in accordance.
Here are two simple examples of emails you can send based on your buyers behavior, stage of the journey and your end goal:
Trigger: buyer downloads an ebook offer on your website --> send them a confirmation email and invite them to take further action aimed at pushing them down the buyer's journey by inviting them to read a consideration stage blog post --> if opened and read, send them a case study --> if opened and read, send them an offer for a free consultation.
Trigger: buyer doesn't visit your blog for over 90 days --> send them a personal email, tell them you missed them and invite them to read your most popular awarebess stage blog posts --> if opened and read, send them a case study --> if opened and read, send them an offer for a free consultation.
The above examples are very simplistic. Indepth lead nurturing requires lead scoring, testing,optimizing and making sure you are pushing your buyer down the journey at the right pace.
4. Grab Attention
The average person has a concentration span of 7 seconds.
Add to that the fact that people are busy and very picky when it comes to the content they decide to read.
Make sure to grab attention quickly and efficiently.
Reduce density. Don't use long paragraphs. Don't create long blocks of text.
Make your text such that it could be understood when scanning.
Use lots of white space – make your email easy on the eyes of your reader.
Try to stick to the Inverted Pyramid:
Here's a great example of a very scanable, white spaced email which uses the inverted pyramid perfectly:
5. Never use underlines
Underlines imply the text is leading to a link. It's a great idea to format your text but underlines are out of the questions unless you are hyperlinking. Just don't.
6. Dealing with different email clients
Some email clients may display your email in a way that is not ideal to read. In order to overcome this challenge:
- make sure to provide a link to an online version of your email
- Don't use a single image as your email
- Add alt-text to all images
- Try to stick to a width of 600 pixels
Implementing the above 6 tips on email marketing should help you make the most of this amazing marketing tool. Focusing on your prospects needs instead of yours can work magic to your conversion rates and boost your online performance. It's amazing where a win-win attitude can get you. Try it.