Email Marketing Best Practices

By Sophie McCullen, Commtractor, Communication, Marketing and Stakeholder Engagement Professional. Sophie is the Communications Director at Think Communications.  

Email marketing is a great relationship building and profit building tool to not only generate new leads but also nurture and reengage existing customers’.

Creating effective email marketing campaigns can feel like speed dating, you need to stay interesting and capture attention but if you talk too much, you’ll never see them again!

We’ve put together a list of best practices to help you cut through the noise of customers busy inboxes to attract attention and cleverly convert prospects!

You Clear Your Letterbox at Home, Don’t You?

Just as you would routinely clear your letterbox at home, clear people from your mailing list who haven’t opened your emails in a couple months or who have unsubscribed and are no longer interested in hearing from you.

While it may seem counterintuitive to delete hard-earned contacts, keeping least engaged recipients on your mailing list can damage your open rate and other campaign metrics as you’re not analysing the campaign’s quality against your most engaged recipients.

Cleaning your mailing list is the best way to curate an engaged recipient base that will keep your delivery rates as high as possible and ensure you’re continuously engaging with people who bring value to your business.

To make this easier for yourself and to comply with anti-spam laws, make sure you’re providing an unsubscribe link in every campaign.

Ditch the ‘No Reply’ Address  

Like many companies, you might be using a no-reply email. While this may seem like a great idea to maintain some control over your inbox, it can result in less engagement and unsuccessful email campaigns.

Using a no-reply email prevents recipients from responding which can stifle two-way conversations as you aren’t there to answer simple questions. It also tells your subscribers you don’t want to hear from them, limiting the potential of your relationship.

Instead, we recommend setting up a regularly monitored email address with a domain that matches the company. You can have fun with this by trying variations such as hello@yourdomain.com or letschat@yourdomain.com, or leading with the name of your company mascot.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed at the thought of needing to promptly respond to your subscribers, try setting up an autoresponder to simply let your audience know you’ll get back to them as soon as possible and provide an active support number if it’s urgent.

There are great opportunities that come from engaging with your customers, whether it’s the potential to increase conversion rates or even using customer questions to inspire content and resources!

The Secret to Striking Subject Lines

Subject lines might only seem like a small part of your message but it’s the golden ticket for standing out in a crowded inbox.

As they’re one of the first impressions you have on your recipients, it often determines if your email is opened or the subscriber continues to scroll through to the next email. According to snov.io, 47% of people open the emails based on the subject lines with 62% of emails being opened thanks to a personalised subject line.

When deciding what to write, we recommend getting right to the point. Email accounts often cut off any subject lines that go beyond 30 – 50 characters, so shorter is often better. You should give readers some indication of what to expect once they open the email. This might include focus on a call to action, adding keywords related to the topic of the email or creating a sense of urgency. We love using a conversational tone to attract readers while giving them a taste of something intriguing by creating subject lines that generate curiosity and a sense of mystery.

Depending on who your target audience is, you can easily spice up your content by adding visual content like emojis to your subject lines! Approximately 68% of millennials use and like seeing emojis, GIFs and stickers in their emails so use them to complement what you’ve written.

Test, Test and Test Some More

Did you know that 42.3% of email recipients delete messages if they are not optimised for mobiles devices?

Before blasting your subscriber list, always send a test mailer to yourself to preview and test the functionality of your email. This gives you the opportunity to catch any spelling and grammatical errors, ensure images show up correctly and all links are working as expected.

You can also test for broken email design by checking the format works on both desktop and smartphone devices. As devices, operating systems and browsers are constantly improving, your email templates may need updating along with them.

With 81% of people checking emails on smartphones, 74% on desktop or laptop, 21% on tablet and 2% on a smartwatch; it’s important to deliver a great subscriber experience no matter what device your consumer prefers. Put simply, if your email doesn’t read well on a user’s device, they probably won’t bother trying to decipher it, leading to missed conversion opportunities.

Marketing Statistics: https://snov.io/blog/email-marketing-statistics/

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