Emails are one of the most important tools in your marketing arsenal, but only 22% of businesses are satisfied with their conversion rates. Emails are cheap, quick to write, and can help you build long-term relationships with your customers en masse. But writing successful marketing emails is not always easy. Getting your email template and copy just right for content marketing, lead generation or audience research can pose a serious business challenge. From telling a story with your email to measuring the success of your campaign, this article will help you maximise your click-throughs and conversions.
We recommend reading our previous article, which includes ten proven email marketing techniques to get started.
1. Tell your brand’s story
From a very early age, we learn to interpret life through stories. It’s natural for people to love narratives, particularly tales that evoke emotion, offer valuable information, or provide entertainment. Don’t let your emails fall prey to being too straight-laced – you need to let your brand’s personality show through your copy to avoid your campaign stagnating.
- Use your copywriting skills to create a story around your marketing message. Keep your readers interested with a compelling email subject and tease them with an interesting first sentence that will hook them
- Your information and roundups should be formed into parcels of knowledge for your audience to digest one at a time. To string a narrative through them, consider what the overarching content theme or story is, and brand all of your emails with a clear purpose
2. Think about how and when to ask for clicks
You need to make sure that, whenever you ask your reader to click on something, whether it’s a piece of gated content or a call-to-action leading to a product page, you time it perfectly. Create a sequencing strategy where you develop a relationship with your readers across the course of multiple emails before you ask them to click-through. This is a sure-fire way to boost your conversion rate. Asking your readers to click on a link too soon in an email is a cardinal sin of email marketing – unless the subject line lets them know to expect this.
- Over time, emails get more insistent. If your first few emails have received low engagement levels, perhaps it’s time to take it up a notch and make your copy more direct, including a clear call-to-action
- Setting your emails in a sequence that allows each one to seamlessly lead on to the next ensures that your emails set the right tone. Insightly is a fantastic CRM that can help you keep track of where each email belongs in the sales pipeline
- You need to use the right voice and set an appropriate tone in your emails. For example, being too bread-and-butter can bore your readers, and being too cheeky can make you look unprofessional. At the same time, a tongue-in-cheek voice can work well for young, digital brands
An email sequence can help to develop confidence and curiosity in your brand’s messages. Priming your readers with a series of connected emails will help establish trust and make them much more likely to click on your call-to-action in the final email.
3. Avoid sending unsolicited emails
credit: success measured
Never send out marketing emails to people who have not given you permission. Equally, if you contact someone who responds with something along the lines of ‘Take me off your mailing list’, then you must comply. Continuing to send unsolicited emails can lead to your account being reported, suspended, and potentially deleted altogether.
On a fundamental level, if your users have not given you permission to contact them, then chances are that your emails are clogging up their spam mail, never to see the light of day. Users choose to receive your correspondence by subscribing to your company’s mailing list or website. You should only contact people who have actively opted in, and then you should produce and send content that they will want to keep on receiving. If you’re using an online store like Shopify, it will automatically prevent you sending out unsolicited emails for legal and security reasons. If you’re using WordPress or Magento, it would be worth your while to use an email management service to help you stay within the law and boost your click-through rates.
It’s best practice to make sure that your opt-in button is very clear on your website. Perhaps you could take a leaf out of Success Measured’s book and include a pop-up message on your site that allows users to opt in to your email marketing? Many brands also offer a small discount to first-time subscribers. Make sure that you make it very clear what exactly people can expect from signing up, and don’t bombard new subscribers with a tonne of emails.
4. Measure performance
Sending out reams and reams of emails is not always going to get you the results you’re after. Poorly planned out email campaigns often fail – and badly performing campaigns are a waste of your marketing budget.
Email is easy to track, test and improve. There are many ways you can track email performance, including using Google Analytics, or built-in analytics generated within your email system. Here are some of the core metrics you should track:
- Open rates
- Click-through rates
- Unsubscribe rates
- Earnings per click
- Complaint rate
Check out this comprehensive list of email marketing metrics and what they mean.
As a general rule of thumb, you need to look out for how much you’re spending on your email marketing in terms of money and business man hours, and how much you’re earning through sales generated by the emails. If the number is positive, then you’re doing well. If not, you have a little work to do. Email can be a cheap way to market, but that doesn’t mean you should be cheap about it.
Executing successful email campaigns may take a little work, but it’s not an impossible task. Make sure you follow best practices, produce engaging copy, avoid sending unsolicited emails, and continuously measure the performance of your campaign. Continuous performance measurement will allow you to make necessary changes to boost your click-through and conversion rates.
What’s your best email marketing tip? Let us know in the comments.