In a world where most of us are flooded with written messages—Facebook posts, emails, and yes, even snail mail—what makes a particular email stand out? Is it a certain font or text size? Riveting content? Consistency of delivery?
In truth, all of these things can play a role in whether someone responds to your business’ emails—but the most important question is: How do you first get them to open the email? Believe it or not, there’s a little magic required in any successful email marketing campaign. Let’s look under the magician’s hat.
Nailing Your Subject Line
Your subject line is your email’s first chance to entice the recipient and should promise something specific and directly valuable to the recipient.
Think of these two examples: Complimentary Eyebrow Waxing Today versus Do You Need Eyebrow Waxing? The first one offers something the recipient will presumably want (a service at no charge) and a time limit for getting it. The second one, while there’s nothing terribly wrong with it, simply isn’t as enticing.
Be sure your subject line and main message are visible before opening the email, as people’s attention spans are growing increasingly shorter. Assume your prospect won’t even open the email, and the message that’s visible in the subject line and first two lines of copy are all they will see—make them count!
Also, avoid spam trigger words like free, trial, great offer etc. You can Google a complete list of spam trigger words, however, keep in mind that context surrounding the words also count. The last thing you want is to go straight to a virtual trash can without even knowing it.
Does the Sender Matter?
If you have a personal relationship with the recipient—say, it’s a loyal client—then the email should come from an individual because it’s more intimate and builds on that connection. However, if there isn’t an established relationship, it should come from your company’s name because it adds professional credibility.
Content Is King
The body of your email is your call to action and should immediately convey your email’s purpose. Are you focusing on a customer benefit? Best pricing/value? Point of difference? Aim for concise messages that get the job done without excessive wordiness. Visuals such as before-and-after pictures are always good to include but make sure your loading speed isn’t hampered by them. In a perfect world, your entire message is visible without having to scroll, but if that isn’t possible, keep scrolling to a minimum.
Variety: The Spice of Life
Be sure that you mix things up regarding content, just as you do in social media posts. Keep readers engaged—if you’re sending the same type of email every time or always trying to sell something—they will quickly delete you or worse, unsubscribe you. Even if you offer only one type of product or service (like laser hair removal), you can still vary your emails between weekly specials, summer tips for best treatment results, suggested products for post-treatment and so on.
Keep a Schedule
It’s surprising how many businesses send out emails without bothering to carefully check for spelling and grammar. Don’t make that mistake! Also, be sure to do a test run on a mobile device to see what’s visible before opening it and how quickly it loads.
If you’re an old soul who still gets a newspaper physically delivered to you, you know that your paper will arrive every day at a specific time. By doing this, you’re trained to know when to expect it, and you look forward to it. Whether you send emails daily, weekly, or monthly, do so at the same time/day of the week.
What’s the Magic Wand?
In summary, the key to any type of successful marketing, including email, is staying in front of the customer. Victoria’s Secret knows how to do this with catalogs, TV ads, emails and more. Maybe the average woman buys lingerie only a few times a year, but when she is ready to make a purchase, she’ll think first of the lingerie company that is always in front of her. With a little bit of email magic, you can be the first one your customers think of when they’re ready to make a purchase.
Louis “The Laser Guy’s” Top Tips for Making Email Magic:
- Even better than getting your emails read is getting them shared and/or having them go viral. Improve your chances of this happening with content that’s funny, heartwarming, unique or contains an incredible offer.
- Sign up for at least twenty different email lists—e.g., cooking, hiking, parenting tips, etc. and consider which emails grab your attention, causing you to engage. Don’t be afraid to replicate other company’s great ideas for your own products and services.
- Tracking your results is essential, so consider purchasing email tracking software such as Constant Contact—you’ll be able to see who has opened, clicked, and shared your emails, along with other features. Pay attention to what works—and what doesn’t—and make changes accordingly.