Did you know that 20% of a brand’s emails will never reach the customer at all? This, coupled with an email provider’s desire to provide the best user experience within the inbox, means that many more are going straight to spam or promotions.
As email matures as a direct-to-consumer marketing channel, more and more businesses engage in the practice, meaning consumers are more overwhelmed with email marketing than ever before.
As a natural result, consumers pay less attention to their emails.
Related: Why Email Marketing Is Better for Your Business Than Social Media
Marketers and brands work really hard and spend a lot of money to build their email lists, so it’s no big surprise they’re let down when they see open rates between 15% and 25%. Because owning a strong email list can be one of the most important assets for your business, we need to find ways to ensure that emails serve us well.
Here are five surprising ways you can increase not only your open rates but the conversion rates of your marketing emails as well.
1. Resend emails to unopens
For an email to convert, it must first be opened, but most of the emails you send will never be opened.
In the age of marketing automation, it’s really easy to set up your email sends and then simply let the software do its thing. However, one of the easiest ways to get more opens on your emails is to go in manually and resend them to anyone who didn’t open them at least 24 after the initial send.
Think about why your email may have been overlooked. Was it sent at an inopportune time of day? Was the subject line less than appealing? Was the sender line too vague?
The average consumer is inundated with emails spending roughly 5 hours a day in an inbox between work and personal accounts. With all that noise, a great subject line is the best way to capture their attention.
Very simply, an effective subject line will be short, provide value, express urgency and steer clear of buzzwords. You may not be able to accomplish all this with just a few words, but keep these tips as your north star when crafting a subject line.
This isn’t something you need to or should be doing for every email you send, but when used strategically, updating and resending your email campaigns will help you to reach more of your list.
Related: Inbox Zero Is a Fantasy. I’m Trying for Calendar Zero Instead.
2. Optimize for mobile
Consumers spend more time on their phones than ever before, which means they’re doing many inbox check-ins on mobile devices. According to Hubspot, most email views (41%) come from mobile devices. Shockingly, 80% of emails being sent are not optimized for mobile.
Most email providers have a quick and easy function that lets you see how your email will appear on mobile devices as you craft it. You can also send yourself a test email to be sure.
Use these tools to ensure that your emails look good and load quickly on mobile before you send them.
Related: 3 Steps to Maximize Your Mobile Email Marketing
3. Clean your list
There will come a point when your email list isn’t serving you anymore because a large portion of your audience is either fatigued by your emails or never getting them in the first place. You can expect your email list to depreciate by 22.5% per year.
Two to four times a year, you should identify the people who never open your emails and remove them from your list to ensure that only those interested in hearing from you are receiving your communications.
This will dramatically increase your deliverability, open rates and click-through rates. Bonus: It will decrease the cost of your email marketing software.
4. Build your list
Because the value of your list is decreasing over time, one of the best ways to increase your emails’ conversion rate is to actively bring in new, engaged leads.
The most simple and effective way to do this is to create a strong offer, or lead magnet that you know is valuable to your target demographic. Start driving traffic to this offer through paid social ads, brand partnerships and even in-person events.
Related: How To Start An Email List And Succeed From Day 1
5. Ask your customers what they want
As marketers and brand leaders, we often develop our content around what we think our customers should have instead of simply asking them what they want. One of the most simple and effective ways to get more opens and create conversions from your emails is to ask the right questions.
In addition to asking what kinds of emails they’re most interested in, you can also ask what kind of new product they’d like to see, what their favorite social media platforms and podcasts are, or even what kind of sales they enjoy most.
All these data points will help inform your product development and marketing strategy in a way that will make a huge difference in your business.
You can make these customer surveys work for you even further by offering a coupon or discount to anyone who participates — and now you’ve got great data and incentivized your customer to make a new purchase.
Email marketing has gotten more difficult over the years, but it’s far from ineffective. It’s 40x more effective than social media—and that’s a number no business today can afford to ignore.
With the right strategies in place, you can use your emails to convert subscribers and generate more revenue for your business.
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