Never worry about the spam folder, poor open rates and click through rates ever again!
And despite what you may think, email marketing is still growing: Gmail alone has 1 billion users worldwide, and it’s predicted that there will be 3 billion email users worldwide by 2020.
Email is not dead, but it is getting harder to do well.
I’ve been email marketing almost every day since 1999 and today I’d like to distill my best advice into a set of guidelines that you can follow to improve your email marketing and increase engagement in the years ahead.
Here we go!
#1: Send Emails to People That Want to Hear From You
If you have email lists with an engagement rate of less than 10%, stop sending to them. Every time you send to a list with low open rates, it crushes your domain reputation and chances of connecting with other potential customers.
When you receive a flood emails from brands you don’t engage with, deleting them is tiresome. Empathize with your email subscribers and treat their inbox the way you would want to be treated.
#2: Have a Goal For Every Email
If you don’t have a goal in mind for what you’re sending, your subscribers won’t know what the goal is either.
Goals for your emails could include a registering for a webinar, listening to a podcast episode, watching a video or redeeming a promo code. for a purchase on your store.
Give your subscribers options in your messages, such as CTA buttons and text links, so they have multiple ways to achieve your goal. Everyone’s behavior is different, so make sure that your emails are flexible.
Email personalization really works. I always find that emails with the subscribers’ first names in the subject lines have higher clickthrough rates than emails that don’t.
When personalizing your emails, stick with the basics. Personalize according to their name and experiment from there.
#4: Be Thoughtful
Avoid writing clickbait email subject lines. When people click on your email and then immediately hit the delete button when they realize your subject line wasn’t genuine, your CTR will suffer.
Take the time to personalize your email subject lines and experiment with emojis. I even like to read subject lines out loud before sending so that I know it makes sense.
#5: Engage With Contacts That Filled Out Forms
When someone fills out a form on your website and provides their email address, their engagement rates will always be higher than cold contacts you’ve imported from a list.
That’s because they actually want to hear from you. Crazy, right? Take the time to personally reach out and thank them for subscribing. Watch what happens.
#6: Experiment With Sending On Different Days
Stop sending all of your most important emails on a Tuesday. Seriously, stop.
Yes, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays are the most popular days to send email, but they’re also oversaturated with messages that are overwhelming your subscribers.
If you want to increase your open and engagement rate, try sending on Monday and Friday afternoons. Emails with CTAs perform well for me on Saturdays, so don’t be afraid to experiment with sending emails on the weekend, either.
#7: If People Stop Opening, Figure Out What’s Wrong Fast
If your email open rate is falling, it means something is wrong and you should prepare for worse outcome.
It’s usually a leading indicator that spam complaints and unsubscribes are coming your way, and you should instantly suppress your unengaged subscribers to show email providers that you’re responding to feedback.
#8: If People Are Unsubscribing, Don’t Worry
You can’t please every person on the planet, and unsubscribes are going to happen. Luckily, your subscribers press the spam button. They simply said, in the nicest way possible, that they don’t want to hear from you anymore.
Don’t get all worked up, but if more people keep unsubscribing, try to figure out the potential cause. I’d suggest that you start with suppressing or sending fewer emails to subscribers who aren’t as engaging.
#9: If People Mark You As Spam, Stop Immediately
If you’re subscribers are marking your emails as spam, your domain reputation is at risk, and you could become blacklisted. Slow your email frequency or completely stop sending until you figure it out.
#10: Suppress Your Unengaged Subscribers
You may be sending spam today without knowing it, and that’s because the definition of spam recently changed.
Now, there’s a term known as Graymail. Which refers to bulk email messages that aren’t technically spam because the recipients gave you their information, but the fact is, they get your emails and don’t touch them.
Your engagement rates will plummet if recipients do not open your first email, so if they continue ignoring you.
Stop sending graymail, and listen to what your subscribers are telling you by not opening your emails. Suppress your unengaged subscribers. That way, your open rates will increase, and inbox providers will see that you’re responding to subscriber behavior