Email Marketing is a Life and Here is a Proof (Stat 2017)
Today, there are many ways to contact customers. Since mobile marketing and social media began to develop intensively, some believe that email is old-fashioned and not useful anymore. But according to statistics for 2017, there are 3.7 billion email users worldwide. It's almost 1 billion more than users of social networks. Also, 92% of online adults use email (and only 62% of adults actively use Facebook). Marketers claim that the average value of a sale from an email is around three times higher than social media. Want even more numbers? As reported by MarketingSherpa, 96% of respondents earning $75,000 - $99,000 prefer receiving promotional emails from companies they already know. Furthermore, about 60% would like this on a weekly basis.
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Veterans of the email marketing industry also say the future of email is going to be very bright. They predict even deeper integration of email marketing and social media, more advanced email template designers, and further gamification of electronic messages. So, do you still have doubts that email marketing is alive and going to get even stronger till 2018?
As email remains a great way to reach your audience, let's think how to master your email writing and bring it to a higher level.
Segment and Personalize Your Recipient List
Sending commercial messages to your entire list might be doing more harm than good. Imagine that you just downloaded a free demo version of some software and had not even evaluated it, but next day you receive an offer for a frequent user. Sure thing that no one wants to receive irrelevant information. So do your recipients. Making sure that you deliver your message to the right person saves your valuable time and reputation. Email segmentation is a way to sort your email list into categories to send more targeted messages. First of all, think about segmenting based on such differentiating factors as demographics, customer activity, and engagement level.
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After you finished segmenting your list, there is still something left to do to make your subscribers feel unique. No worries, you don't need to type different messages by hand to each of your recipients. Simply use personalization (dynamic) tags at multiple points of the campaign creation process (this must be supported by your email marketing software). For instance, when a subscriber named Lucy receives your email, she would see her name in place of the personalization tag. Possibilities with dynamic tags are endless. They'll allow you to greet your recipients by name, insert their company name if needed, include any other relevant information you collected about them, and so on.
Use Persuasive Email Subject Lines
Remember, with your email you need to reach humans, not just inboxes. To get your online message opened, take the time to work on subject lines that grab your reader's attention. So here are several recommendations to create compelling email subject lines.
#1 Stay Brief and Use User Specific Words
Finding your “power words” might be not easy but be patient and spare the time to analyze at least 15-20 campaigns in order to compare the open rates between them. Keep in mind that usually people prefer conciseness and accuracy over lengthiness and cheating.
#2 Use Sentences but Remember About the Length
We rarely talk in short phrases to express our thoughts. So if you want a recipient to understand what you are going to share with him, use clear but short sentences. Aim for 5-7 words to ensure your subject line will always appear in full on different devices.
#3 Use Brackets and CAPS
To make your email stand out, you can try including your company or product name in brackets. Capitalization is also an excellent way to emphasize something important. But note that typing messages in all CAPS may be considered rude. Since no one likes to be yelled at, use capitalization only to the point. Here are good and bad examples.
[URGENT]: I need your help
[URGENT]: I NEED YOUR HELP!!!
If this isn't clear yet, the second subject line is a thing to avoid in your mailings.
#4 Personalize and Localize
Did you know that personalized subject lines are about 20% more likely to be opened? Try including a customer's name in the subject line to make him feel special by tailoring your message uniquely. But keep in mind that the email you’re sending must be something that he's shown interest in.
Additionally, you can tailor your subject line according to your recipient’s specific location. Saying something like “Great news for our US fans” will add a personal touch to your email message. Furthermore, you can use “you” and “your” so that your recipient feels like you’re talking to him directly. Now compare two subject lines below.
“5 tips for marketers” vs. “Mike, here are five marketing tips just for you”. Which of these two, in your opinion, is more likely to be opened by Mike if he is indeed dealing with email marketing?
#5 Add Urgency
The shorter the amount of time that subscribers have to act, the more compelled they will feel to do so. However, don’t use this trick too often, as they may think that your product/service is useless and no one wants to buy it, or that you are cheating. Here are several words that can increase urgency: “last chance,” “almost gone,” “order now,” “available for a limited time.”
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#6 Share an Offer
Give them a reason to read your content. Think about starting with benefits right in the subject line.
#7 Add Social Proof
Show people the numbers. If you have 300,000 subscribers, why not mention it? If 70% of your first-time buyers become repeat customers, include it in your subject line.
Image courtesy of Campaignmonitor
#8 Arouse Curiosity
Making people open your emails and read your content may be hard enough. Share a piece of information, then highlight something your audience doesn’t know yet, so they itch to click and read further. You can also create curiosity by asking questions or using words such as “confession,” “undiscovered,” “unusual,” “limited,” “secret,” or “rare.”
Make your prospects feel like you know how to make things better for them. Offer your assistance. They will need to read your message to see what you can do for them.
#10 Use Retargeting Subject Lines
Retargeting subject lines are effective when prospects fail to complete an action you wanted them to take (e.g. abandoned shopping cart). Not to lose customers, gently remind them about the unfinished purchase using such subject lines: “The price dropped for the product in your cart,” “Get 20% off when you finish your order!”, “Was there a problem checking out?”.
#11 Sloth Subject Lines
Sloth can also contribute to crafting a great subject line. For instance, you can encourage people to open your emails by highlighting resources they can find in them. How about these? “Create a cold email that works in 5 easy steps”, “Learn how to write emails + 20 best persuasive emails examples”, “100 persuasive email subject lines for you”.
Increase Your Email Authority by Adding Preview Text
To let customers know what the message is about, create a brief preheader that will appear after the subject line. By doing so, you will show your subscribers that you are sensitive to their time. Keep it short and concise as most email clients display between 35-90 characters of the preheader.
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How to Write a Persuasive Email Message
Writing a convincing email to a client is an art. However, you can master it by following these eight significant steps:
#1 Work out Your Personal Tone
Without developing your distinct tone, you run the risk of turning into a faceless company. Your personal tone should be distinctive, recognizable, and unique. It should build trust and make people remember how you made them feel. However, don't lose the balance between familiarity and trust. Keep in mind that the formal language runs the risk of lacking in personality. In contrast, the informal language sounds more personal and warm, yet may be interpreted as lacking professionalism.
#2 Make it Personal
Your subscribers are humans, not robots, so even an automated email should be personal. To be able to personalize emails, collect such basic information as your subscribers’ names, their demographics, gender, date of joining, etc. For example, Amazon ALWAYS calls you by the first name, and this is nice. They OFTEN use phrases like “you might be interested” focusing on your interests instead of theirs. Furthermore, based on your recent visits, they list recommended items specially for you (e.g. a list of 10 books that you might like).
#3 Add a Reason
Adding a reason, no matter how simple it is, can help customers come to a decision. So providing people a solution, try to explain why you believe that it will work.
#4 Showcase Your Knowledge
If you’re writing to persuade, prove your valuable knowledge and experience in the area a recipient is active in.
#5 Add Magnet Words to Your Copy
To increase your open, read and response rates, focus on the usage of “you,” not “we.” Also consider using the following eye magnet words: “easy,” “secret,” “guarantee,” “new,” “free,” “because,” “amazing,” “offer,” “best-selling,” “improve,” “increase,” and others.
#6 Use a Fear of Missing it Out
The fear of missing out (also known as FOMO) is a common driver of action. Try using these phrases that imply scarcity in headings and promo copies: “limited offer,” “sale ends soon”, “for limited time,” "buy while stocks last!”, etc.
To make your message more effective, be clear and concise. You can tell the audience what you are offering straight in your headline. Your body copy should contain the information how you or your product may help the reader. And, finally, let people know what they should do next to find out more or get the product.
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#8 Emojis - be Careful
Emojis in emails are becoming more and more popular. But is there a place for these smiley faces in business writing? We say yes, especially if your company prefers informal tone, but use them at the right time with the right people. If you sell software to medical facilities or research centers, inserting Emojis isn’t the best option.
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Read more about other things to avoid when composing and sending out an email.
Use Visually Appealing Design to Increase Your Authority
About 65% of us are visual learners, and 90% of information that comes to the brain is also visual. That is why it is logical to use visual content in order to gain reader’s attention.
#1 Use F-pattern When Choosing or Creating Template
The “F-pattern” is the typical way our eyes move when we read web content. According to eye tracking studies, users scan online information in the shape of the letter “F.”
The top of this “F” is formed when they start reading a headline at the top of your page. Then readers go back to the left side of the screen and move their eyes down the page until they see numerals, bullet points or another heading that catches their eye. Once they start reading at that point, they move to the right side of the page to finish the line.
Then, as a rule, people continue scanning the page until they see anything else that draws attention, switch to another page or leave your site.
If your content does not match the "F-pattern," users may feel like they have wasted too much time. This can be avoided by planning your emails with this pattern in mind.
#2 Use Pictures That Fit Contextually
While it goes without saying that your images should be high quality and attractive, they also need to be contextually relevant.
#3 Remove Distractions From Your Email
Reducing content isn’t easy, as you’re proud of your product and can write a full academic essay on its benefits, but remember that you simply can't include everything!
So let’s stick to the rule “One email = One goal.”
Identify your most wanted action (goal), review the entire message you are going to send, look for the distracting elements that can stop people from reaching that goal (fonts and colors, multiple calls to action, irrelevant images, too much information, etc.) Now cut them off!
#4 Add P.S.
The postscript is usually part of a personalized email. Use it to introduce a bonus or another benefit which you didn't mention in the email, suggest a deadline, ask for immediate action, etc. For example:
“If you act right now, you’ll receive….", "We are offering a 20% discount for first-time users...".
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#5 Be Sure it Works on all Devices
Don't hit send until you check if your email looks good on both desktop computers and mobile devices.
Test it on your iPhone, Android, and whatever you think your readers might use to consume your messages.
#6 Add Text Version to Your HTML Design
When creating a beautifully designed email, keep in mind that some browsers, email clients, and mobile devices can't display HTML properly. And if you fail to optimize your copy for both versions, some of your subscribers will not be able to see a readable email, but just a broken design. So don't forget to include a plain text alternative.
An effective Call-to-Action (CTA) is eye-catching, simple, direct, and compelling. More tips on how to write Call-to-Actions here.
Add Email Signatures
The last impression is as important as the first impression. In order to look professional, inspire trust, and promote your brand with every email, consider creating your email signature.
#1 Use Headshot
Headshot is a great way to personalize your signature as it helps build a relationship with your recipient. Use only well-lit, well-shot, and professional images.
#2 Use Template That Fit Your Corporate Style
A proven method for selecting your colors and fonts is to take samples from other branded materials such as your website, logo, business cards. Also, it would be great to have uniform organizational email signatures for employees in your company.
#3 Add Contacts to Reach You
Your contact information should include your business website and at least one phone number. Some people additionally include their email addresses, although many experts say it’s unnecessary.
#4 Add Social Icons
Adding social media icons to your email signature is a good way to get new followers and make people read your social content on a regular basis.
#5 Add Email Signature Banner
An email signature banner can be a powerful marketing tool and an obvious opportunity to inform your audience about events, special offers, new releases, and other significant things happening in your company. Besides, you can promote your company motto, show your awards and certificates, or just beautify your messages.
Click here to create email signature for your business
Remember About Spam Folders
Now when you know how to write convincing emails, discover a few simple tips to help you stay out of junk folders:
- avoid purchased lists
- remove inactive contacts from your lists
- avoid deceptive subject lines
- send only relevant content
- don’t be annoying
- reexamine your send frequency
- don’t use link shortening services like bit.ly
- make it easy to unsubscribe