An email marketing strategy is part of your overall marketing strategy and business plan. It helps you market your products and services with the use of the email channel with the best chances for making a profit and reaching your goals.
“An effective email marketing strategy transforms ideas into actions”
But why email marketing?
• Email marketing can have a big reach and put your message in front of a lot of people.
• The marketer has great flexibility in how they handle their email program.
• It is quite easy to start and you can start small.
• Email allows you to target and segment your messages on individual level.
• There are little risks, the costs are relatively low and potential for upside is big.
But email marketing is not a silver bullet. If your email marketing efforts aren’t effective this is because you aren’t doing the right things. You can’t just do anything and expect it to work. You have to think about your strategy and use customer behaviors to turn it around.
This is how to do it.
1. Send your email from a real person, not your company.
When you send email from a real person, your email open rate increases. This is because recipients are typically more likely to trust a personalized sender name and email address than a generic one. People are so inundated with spam nowadays, they often hesitate to open email from unfamiliar senders -- and they're more likely to trust a personalized sender name and email address than a generic one.
2. Pre-set the preview text.
Email clients like the iPhone Mail app, Gmail, and Outlook will display the first few lines of text from the body of your email alongside the subject line. In other words, it's a text preview of the content inside the email.
Use it to provide a short, to-the-point synopsis of what you're offering -- and keep it to 50 characters or less. When you don't set the preview text, the client will automatically pull from the body of your email, which not only looks messy, but is also a wasted opportunity to engage your audience.
3. Write clear and clickable subject lines.
Speaking of the subject line ... your marketing emails have a lot to compete with in recipients' inboxes. The best way to stand out is to write compelling subject lines. To entice readers to click, be sure your subject lines:
- Are super clear and understandable.
- Are fewer than 50 characters so they don't get cut off, particularly by mobile devices.
- Use language and messaging that your target buyer persona is familiar with and excited about.
- Include verbs and action-oriented language to create a sense of urgency and excitement.
- Include an exclusive value proposition (like a 20% off deal or a free ebook) so people know what they're getting.
Include their first names sometimes (it could increase click-through rates), or even add something about their specific location
4. Keep your emails short.
Everyone's busy and their inbox is already full. Why add to the problem with a huge, long email? People generally like short, concise emails better than long ones. Plus, when they're scanning through all their emails in a short amount of time, they're more likely to skim and glean the overall message before deciding to take any action.
5. Include one, clear call-to-action button per email.
Remember when we said a lot of your email recipients will scan your email without reading all the copy? That's why you want to have a clear call-to-action button that's easy to spot for even the quickest of email scanners. Without a CTA button, you won't be calling on your recipients to take any action that actually benefits them -- and the growth of your business.
You'll want to place your CTA in a location where it's easily visible and where it makes sense for someone to click on it. For example, you might put a CTA to download a free ebook in an email that describes new strategies for using your product.
6. Include noticeable text links.
In general, it's a good idea to link to your featured offer in multiple places in addition to the clear and focused call-to-action button. In addition to your main CTAs and images, consider including a noticeable text link (or two) when applicable because having more links increases the opportunity for engagement.
7. Add social sharing buttons.
Increasing the number of people who see your link will increase the number of people who click on it. So, be sure to extend the life of your email by adding social sharing buttons. Many email tools will come with templates that have built-in social sharing buttons that make it easy -- just fill in the destination URL and you're good to go.
8. Keep mobile users top-of-mind.
In Litmus' analysis of over a billion email opens, they reported that 56% of opened emails were opened on mobile devices in April 2016. This figure represents an 8% increase in mobile opens in the past year.
"This represents a peak for mobile market share," they wrote, "and the longest sustained growth we’ve seen after the holiday season."
As more and more people use their mobile devices to read email and surf the web, it's more important than ever that marketers design their emails with mobile users in mind. Otherwise, their user base will be significantly affected.
9. Preview and test your emails before sending them.
When you're finally ready to hit "Send" on your email, make a habit of double-checking one last time whether your emails look as good as you think they do. If your email marketing tool lets you, go ahead and preview what your email looks like in different email clients and devices that are popular with your audience.
Need some help with your email marketing strategy? Contact eproductions!