There was a time when the ping of a new message in your inbox would get you excited to open and see what it has for you. But these days, it takes a lot more for someone to actually bother opening any particular email from a pile of emails that flood their inbox every day.
Unless an email has something which is genuinely useful or super-interesting, it is likely to be discarded along with other junk emails. So the question is, are email newsletters still relevant enough to invest valuable time and money into?
The answer is yes!
Email newsletters still remain one of the best means of expanding your brand reach and communicating with your existing as well as potential customers. Not convinced? Let me give you some of the most conclusive reasons why newsletters must remain part of your online marketing strategy.
So you see, engaging newsletters should definitely be a part of your online marketing strategy, especially if you are actively looking to increase the number of followers/customers for your brand.
Now, moving on to the more important bit.
For your newsletters to work, you will need to ensure that they stand out from the heap of emails that flood your subscriber’s inbox daily. And this can only be done if you know certain tricks of successful email marketing. To make things easier for you, we have compiled some of the best, tried-and-tested email marketing tricks used by industry leaders, which will effectively help you to grow your client base.
Below is the extended version of the above infographic which tells you the best tested and tried email marketing techniques. Keep this tricks in mind next time for your email marketing campaign. So, dive in!
Before you start working on creating those compelling newsletters, there is one thing that you need to ensure, and that is, creating an email list. For your brand to get the right kind of attention, it is very important that you include everyone who’s related to your industry in some way or the other.
So the question is how do you grow your email list?
Here, you will need to create two different versions (A & B) of the same newsletter, and send them to two small, different test groups. The version which gets the maximum number of clicks and opens will be the winning version, which can then be sent to your important subscribers.
You can create engaging email campaigns for A/B Testing through Campaign Monitor.
Before you start shooting emails randomly to people, it’s advisable to do a bit of research. Try and find the answers to questions like;
The answers to such questions will help you in planning your email marketing campaign.
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to the kind of customers you’ll get online. You will have to be prepared to cater to a wide range of customer types. Hence, it’s important to segment your audience and then plan your email marketing strategies accordingly, to get the most effective results.
But which criteria do you consider when segmenting a wide customer base?
Here are a few suggestions;
One very important aspect of email marketing which you should figure out early on is the time at which your newsletter is dropped in your subscriber’s inbox.
If you send your newsletters at times when your readers are busy performing their daily routine, like driving to or fro work, preparing/eating food, bathing/putting their children to sleep, etc, then chances are, your email may get pushed down under the load of other emails and fail to get noticed.
The best time to send your email newsletters is when your subscribers are likely to check their inboxes. The morning and early afternoon hours are considered to be the ideal time to drop an email to your readers.
Email newsletters are one of the most effective ways of selling your products or services to prospective clients. Hence, you should use it wisely to attract genuinely interested customers to your website.
And you can do so by creating a free PDF or eBook which offers something informative or helpful to your subscribers, to be downloaded for free. This will add an element of reliability to your brand.
Take a cue from bigshot bloggers like Neil Patel and Brian Dean, and create an email series, with each newsletter containing information which follows up the content in the previous email.
You can talk about your niche or area of speciality, and offer trade secrets to your subscribers to help improve their own business or blog. Make use of email or marketing automation tools like tools like Active Campaign to create engaging email newsletter series for your subscribers.
A very important rule of email marketing is to make your subscriber feel special so that he/she may open your email and actually check out or buy what you have to offer. For that, you need to talk to your readers as if you are actually speaking to someone you know.
Address each subscriber with his/her name, thank them for their loyalty, offer them special gifts/discounts and send out newsletters with relevant information based on their past searches, so that they are more likely to open your emails, and look forward to your newsletters in the future.
In the online marketing world, “Sharing is Selling.”
The more you share your knowledge, ideas and experience about your brand’s journey, the more trust you build with your subscribers, which can then convert into sales.
So share your detailed knowledge about the industry, your success and failure case studies, your experiences as an industry expert, etc, so that your subscribers can learn to rely on you when they need any help.
Try and be available at all times to address your readers’ concerns or help them through with their problems. This one effort will separate you from your competitors and make your subscribers trust you more when the time comes to choose. Instead of waiting for another day, shoot back a response as soon as you can, if a reader has replied to your newsletter.
Don’t be a drone and go on and on about your service or product. And don’t always include SEO-friendly content which reads more like it’s been written by a robot than a human.
Try and make your newsletters emotionally rich and creatively unique.
Create stories out of your experiences and tell them to your readers in a convincing manner so that they can identify with you on a personal level. Give them something which they can share with their friends or colleagues.
Learn how to persuade your subscribers through your emails, without giving everything away at once. Without beating around the bush, give your customers a bait which requires them to click through to your website, in order to learn more about your offer.
For example, if you wish to tell your subscribers about a sale or discount on your products, tell them about the discount but not the products on which the discount applies. This will compel them to open your website and check out the products which interest them.
However, don’t forget to give them enough incentive to actually get them interested enough to check out your product.
Email newsletters only work to your advantage when they compel people to take action quickly. Which is why, your email newsletters and especially their subject lines, should have that sense of urgency, which makes your audience click and open them without second thoughts.
So how do you include such a sense of urgency in your writing? Here are a few suggestions;
For those of you wondering what exactly ‘infotainment’ means, here is a simple description; It’s Information + Entertainment. Include some pop culture references in your email, especially if you know your reader likes a certain TV show, movie, music band, magazine or book.
For instance, if your subscriber has liked and searched for something related to his favourite movie, and if you send a newsletter with a subject line which has a reference to his favourite character this show, he is sure to get curious enough to open it.
Your subscriber’s inbox is likely going to be filled with hundreds of emails. So how do you make sure that your newsletter stands out and is interesting enough to make the reader click and open it?
That’s right, with a super catchy subject line or headline!
The trick of writing catchy headlines lies in wording your message in a way that piques your audience’s interest. Make sure you only reveal little in your subject line, and in a way that tells the reader that there is something in the email that will definitely be of importance to him.
Also, remember to avoid using words like “Help” and “Reminder,” as they have been found to have a negative effect on the open and click-through rates, according to a study conducted by MailChimp.
When it comes to selling your services online, the first thing any entrepreneur should do is, gain the trust of his followers and subscribers. Only then will he be able to sell his services successfully as time progresses.
If your newsletter is selling a digital service or product, make sure you offer a Money Back Guarantee, if the service does not deliver its promise within a certain amount of time. This will compel your audience to trust your authenticity and urge them to give your service a try. This strategy is mostly used by the best hosting providers and the results are fantastic.
There are certain rules to creating effective sign-up forms by following which, you can guarantee that a visitor will submit his email address and sign up for your newsletter.
To make matters simple for you, here are a few tips of creating a powerful sign-up form for your website;
Along with engaging content, your newsletters should also be rich in another element- Visual Appeal.
Take, for example, two newsletters which have the same content but are designed in different ways. One has a straight-forward design with minimum images and colours while the other is vibrant and filled with relevant imagery to complement the content. Which one are you likely to connect with more?
The latter of course!
So give equal importance to the design and graphical side of your newsletter, along with quality content.
Your brand’s logo can become a deciding factor in whether someone opens the email or just clicks the delete button without ever opening it. Therefore, it is crucial that you include your logo in your newsletter design template.
Once your audience starts connecting with your content and identifies your logo, they will never miss it in the boatload of emails that gather in their mailbox, and your newsletters will not go to trash unread.
When somebody subscribes to your newsletter, he/she is likely to have friends or colleagues who may also be interested in what you have to say.
When you include an “Email to a Friend,” or “Forward to a Friend” option in your email, it will allow your subscribers to share your emails with their friends with just one click.
In other words, by including this one little option, you’ll be able to target a wide range of audience through just one newsletter. MailChimp allows you to add such an option, and you can learn more about how to add it here.
A remail, as the name suggests, is a previous mail which you resend to your subscribers, but with noticeable changes which add certain values that were previously missing.
However, the thing about remails is that they only have to be sent to that section of your email list who did not open the first email.
This way, you will be able to get at least a few, if not all, of those unread emails to be opened. But don’t just copy and paste the same thing again. Make sure you alter it enough to grab the reader’s attention.
When someone clicks on any link provided within your newsletter, it indicates that the person is genuinely interested in what you have to offer.
You can send these people a follow-up email thanking them, and asking them if they need any further help about using your service or product.
Additionally, you can also offer another incentive in your follow up mail, in the form of a discount on another related service, thereby ensuring both, their trust and another sale.
Tracking your clicks helps you to know which subscriber out of your mailing list clicked and opened your newsletter. In order to do so, you can make use of MailChimp’s click tracking option which when enabled, adds tracking information to each newsletter URL.
This tracking method allows you to understand how well your subscribers are connecting with your emails, and whether they are reaching the targeted page on your website. Once you have an idea about which kind of newsletters are working and which are not, you can accordingly plan your email marketing strategies in the future.
There are certain email marketing metrics which you definitely need to measure if you are to improvise your marketing strategies and please your subscribers in the future. Here are some of the most important email marketing metrics which you should measure;
For example, very early morning, say around 6 AM, is considered a bad time to greet your subscribers with a newsletter. Many of them may still be snoozing, so even though yours may be the first email in their inbox, it will likely get buried under other emails by the time the customer actually checks his mailbox.
Also, don’t bother your subscribers much during holidays, especially if your newsletter contains business-related information. People generally tend to avoid checking or reading their business-related emails during holidays, and so your effort will probably go unnoticed.
Social media has become the most popular platform to build fruitful relationships with potential customers. And the good news is, you can easily merge social media with your email marketing campaigns to gain maximum benefits. Here’s how you can go about it;
And that’s a wrap, folks!
Keep these tips handy for the next time you plan your email marketing campaign, and reap the benefits of creating powerful newsletters that sell! Do you have any other ways you can improve your email marketing strategies? Don’t hesitate to share them in the comments section. We would love to hear from you!