What is the preferred marketing channel people choose to be communicated to over any other channel? 72% of consumers surveyed said Email, the oldest digital medium still in use.
Shouldn’t be a surprising fact, given that our online identities are defined by our email addresses. By the end of 2016, it is predicted that there will be 4.6 billion email accounts in existence.
That number represents a huge opportunity! And is the reason email should always be a part of your marketing plans.
(Everyone loves a good stock photo. I anticipate they're talking about their email strategy).
To drive more business, here are ten email hacks to follow that we here at Anderson also adhere to:
1- Segment your data and send contextual emails. This will ensure your emails are personalized to your subscriber’s needs/pain points/interests. The relevancy of your emails will build trust between your subscribers and your company/brand.
2- Purge your list regularly. With ISP filters defending against spam emails, you want to make sure these filters find your IP valid and trustworthy. Have a re-engagement program in place for inactive users that allows you to track them, reduce email frequency, and eventually remove them from your list if winback or re-permission tactics don’t work. Be sure to also purge non-existent users which can ramp up your bounce rate and danger your send credibility.
3- Optimize for Mobile. Mobile email will account for 15-70% of email opens, depending on your target audience, product and email type. Make sure you are accommodating your subscribers preferred way of reading your content. And don’t forget about wearable devices such as the Apple Watch. You’ll want to consider their smaller screens and need for plain-text emails. Check out our November 2012 blog post with tips on a mobile friendly email design…even back then we were encouraging the need for mobile optimization of emails!
4- Keep your email template design sleek and simple. This will allow for an easy transition between devices, especially if you use a one column layout. Also consider responsive design, which automatically optimizes for whichever device is being used.
5- Don’t hide your unsubscribe link. Although you don’t want to lose a subscriber by making it easy for them to opt-out of your communications, making this task difficult for them could cost you–they may just decide to mark your email as spam, or if receiving your email via Gmail they could also decide to block you forever. Instead, give them the opportunity to opt-out through your preference center which would also provide your subscribers a chance to simply adjust their preferences.
6- From name should be recognizable. This is the first thing a subscriber will see when they receive an email, so make sure you are using your brand name so they know the email is coming from a trusted source.
7- Make sure your subject line is useful and specific. This is your biggest chance of getting a subscriber to open your email, so make sure you engage them and tell them what they are getting. And if appropriate, create a sense of urgency.
8- Don’t forget about your preview text. Although preview text is 3rd in hierarchy as to what a subscriber sees first, it is first in terms of character count. Preview text is like your 2nd chance subject line, so avoid repeating what you’ve already told them in the subject line and include enticing text.
9- Include video links in your email to increase engagement and CTR (click-thru-rate). Video will control 69% of consumer internet traffic by 2017. In 2015, 51.9% of marketing professionals worldwide named video as the type of content with the best ROI. To avoid decreasing deliverability, do not embed the video into your email and instead include a visually-appealing screenshot of the video that links to an external location.
10- Test, test, test! We said it to you in our March 2014 blog post and we’re saying it again. This is the only way you will know what truly works and doesn’t work for your subscribers. Check out Marketo's 17 email rules you should absolutely test.
Be sure to track your emails and use your findings to optimize your email efforts. And of course, don’t forget that email integrated with other marketing channels, such as Social Media, is an even stronger force. If you need help putting together an email strategy, contact Anderson.