Disclaimer: This is a user generated content submitted by a member of the WriteUpCafe Community. The views and writings here reflect that of the author and not of WriteUpCafe. If you have any complaints regarding this post kindly report it to us.

Was it Actually so Bad?

First up, congratulations for selecting the most cost effective digital marketing strategy there is – email marketing.

Since you’re reading this, it appears you have been disappointed with the results you have achieved. Let’s first quickly sanity check if your results are actually that bad.

For email campaigns that are targeting new leads, i.e. people who have likely never received an email from you before, here are some averages

1. Bounces and Unsubscribes: 5% to 10%
2. Open rate: 10% to 15%
3. Click rate: 15% to 30%
4. Call To Action clicks: 80% of all clicks
5. Complete the action: 50%

This translates 1,000 total emails to:
● 90 to 142 Opened
● 13 to 42 Click on any link
● 10 to 33 Click on your main CTA
● 5 to 17 Make it all the way through and complete your registration or sign up process.

If you were at the low end of these averages, or did significantly worse than this, then read on.

Improving Email Marketing Campaign Performance

The five metrics listed above are the key to improving an email marketing campaign that is not currently working. Let’s take each in turn.

1. Bounces, Spam and Unsubscribes

Email bounces are inevitable, people get fired, move jobs, retire and so on – these are “hard bounces”. Good list hygiene means regularly cleaning your list to delete bounces. Many email providers will allow a few so-called “soft bounces”, these are deemed not terminal, but in my experience they almost always are and so the safest way is to remove all bounces, hard and soft. Yes your audience is going down, but these emails were low quality anyway.

Included in this section is the dreaded “S” word – Spam. Spam filtering can be very aggressive and sometimes, it is just not possible to send emails to certain domains / companies during an email campaign. Check your message against lists of known spam trigger words. Removing these will help deliverability.

Next are unsubscribes. These simply need actioning. In many cases you are under a legal duty to remove unsubscribe requests within a reasonable time. Again, there is no point delaying, remove them immediately.

TIP: If you are buying email list data, ask about the level of bounces to expect and what compensation is available.

2. Improving Email Open Rates

Once your email is sent to a good email address, the next step is to get them to open it. There are three points to consider here, in order of importance:
1. The Subject line
2. The From email address
3. Email preview text

The Subject line
Keep it short and to the point! As you can see above, some of the Subject lines are truncated and this is especially true on mobile devices. Research shows that the first three words are usually read, so make sure your critical keywords are at the start and try to limit to about 40 total characters.

There are some proven types of Subject Lines that work. It's a great idea to experiment with them using “A/B Testing”.

Curiosity: “Revealed, 5 tips to improve your email marketing”
Question: “Know the biggest email mistake?
How to: “How to run your best email campaign“
Surprise: “Email campaigns – less gets you more”
Numbers: “5 Tips to improve email campaigns”

A/B Testing is used to test two variations of a message. We always recommend you do this, often it is free. In the examples above, you could test the ‘Curiosity’ and ‘Question’ subject lines types for example, or even two different questions.

TIP: A/B test for every mailing of sufficient size (over 1000 emails).

3. Improving Email Click Through Rates

By this stage, we have lost perhaps 85% of an audience, so getting what is left to click is super important. Contacts who open the email are clearly somewhat interested to learn more, which is a great start.

Attention grabbing start

Research has shown that your audience will read for between 5 to 10 seconds, typically skipping over large blocks of text and picking out on keywords of interest. What does this mean? It means the email must be “Skimable”.

● Start strong, nailing the core purpose of the message and the reason to continue reading.
● No large multi-sentence paragraphs
● Bullet point lists containing important keywords
● Talk about the benefits they will see
● Avoid talking about your own company, history and background. These can likely be found on your website for those interested enough.

Keywords are the critical point in the message. You should know your audience and their hot buttons, so talk to them.

TIP: If possible, personalize – Hi Faye…

4. Improving Call to Action Rates

A clear Call to Action (CTA) is critical. Do not be tempted to pack in lots of other related links, upselling other things can wait for later. Your message should be about one thing and have one, clear CTA button that is very obvious.

Too much choice can be paralyzing, so if you have multiple items to sell in a single message, just make sure the main CTA is much clearer and obvious than other links.

The CTA label is very important. Just “Click here” is lazy and converts poorly. “Request your trial here”, “Download the presentation”, are better as they tell the reader what to expect.

Keep the text short, ideally 3 or 4 words.

TIP: Make sure your CTA is totally obvious when the email is first opened

5. Completing the Call to Action

Given that to get this far, you have already lost up to 99% or your audience, making it easy to complete the call to action is a no-brainer! Too often I see landing pages that are overly complex. Keeping it as simple as possible is the guiding principle. No one likes having to fill in a large form, just to get to a download or other freebie.

Hiding main menus can help people stay focused on the page. Once the CTA is complete, the user can be taken to the website proper.

TIP: Collect the minimum information you need on a clean single landing page.

5 Tips that will improve your email campaigns

1. Email Data: Always use high quality, cleaned email lists, your own or from specialist third party with bounce guarantees
2. Open Rates: Test Subject lines every time and keep them short
3. Click Rates: Engage your reader emotionally from the first sentence.
4. Call to action clicks: Keep the CTA clear, with a clean design and make it obvious what the action is.
5. Converting the CTA: Simple landing pages that ask for minimal information perform best.

Good luck with your next email campaigns and keep testing!

Do you like MarketwiseTim's articles? Follow on social!


Welcome to WriteUpCafe Community

Join our community to engage with fellow bloggers and increase the visibility of your blog.
Join WriteUpCafe