Keeping in touch with clients and customers isn’t as simple as clicking ‘send.’ Here are four tips to ensure your email marketing is on-target
Today, there’s no shortage of ways to stay in touch with clients and customers — there’s texting and Twitter, there’s LinkedIn groups and Facebook pages, and there’s even augmented reality advertising.
Despite this proliferation of mediums, email marketing remains one of the most effective tools for staying in touch with existing customers — and generating new ones. It’s hardly surprising: We check our inboxes up to 15 times each day, according to Forbes.
While email marketing may be a decades-old tactic, its best-practices and etiquette are constantly evolving. Operating an email list is an entirely different art than it was in 2000, or even 2010. As a result, businesses need to ensure their approaches to email marketing are competent and clever — or else risk the dreaded “unsubscribe.”
Here are four email marketing tips to implement today:
Personalize whenever possible. When was the last time you opened an envelope addressed to “Current resident”? Or an email addressed to “Customer”? The answer is likely “never.” Make sure you’re treating your customers with a level of personalization, even if it’s a simple salutation (“Hi, Jennifer.”) Email marketing tools like Constant Contact and MailChimp let you do far more, like offer the most loyal customers early access to tickets, products, and other items.
Pay attention to your subject lines. Writing a good subject line is an art, right? Maybe so — but it’s also a science. Subject lines that are conversational, clever, and pique curiosity tend to work best, and maximize open rates. Conversely, staid or spammy-looking subject lines often flop (and the latter may even trigger the recipient’s spam filter). Many email marketing tools will let you A/B test subject lines — that is, send two options to small segments of your list. Whichever one performs best will be used for the bulk of the list.
Offer a variety of subscription choices. Not all subscribers want the same content or volume. Your most loyal subscribers may crave daily deals, photos, and stories — but others may prefer updates about big announcements only. When signing up, allow your users to select what type of communications they want to receive. This will ensure you’re not emailing anyone too frequently — or too infrequently.
Conduct an annual check-in. While we’re on the topic of subscription choices — show your long-time subscribers you care, too. Consider sending an annual “check-in” email, encouraging subscribers to update their email preferences. It keeps customers engaged, and they’ll likely end up signing up for your newer offerings, which might not have been available when they first subscribed.
These are just a handful of email marketing best practices — but if implemented together and today, they can immediately start to boost engagement, open rates, and sales. So go ahead and get started.