Is your Click-Through Rate low? Can’t get your email Open Rate to creep above a percent or two? If so you should have been at the ‘Grow With Digital’ event today and listened to Tamsin Fox-Davies give an email marketing masterclass.
Taking lessons learned from studying the mountains of data Constant Contact have access to and applying them to the every day business of email marketing for SMEs.
Email Marketing is perhaps the oldest Digital Marketing technique. It’s tried and true, the statistics in Tamsin’s presentation speak for themselves.
- 91% of people check their email daily
- 90% of email is delivered to the intended recipient (Social Media posts reach a fraction of your fans)
- Email Marketing has a conversion rate 3 times that of Social Media
- On average for every £1 spent on Email Marketing there is a £38 ROI
From Tamsin’s presentation I’ve picked out 5 key areas of focus.
1. First Impressions Matter
Getting someone to open your email is only part of the battle. The majority of people will take only a few seconds to scan an email to decide if it’s worth their time reading. This means in those 2-5 seconds your email needs to have communicated it’s value to your customer. If a customer has opened your email they should know who it’s from but it still pays to make sure all of your emails use the same consistent branding. Make full use of images, Calls-To-Action and different formatting options to draw your customer’s eye to the most important bits of information in your email.
2. Write For Your Audience
When creating your email content you must always have your Buyer Personas at the forefront of your mind. It’s very easy to slip and begin writing for the content you have or the outcome you want to affect. This is almost always counter-productive. Email campaigns that are properly targeted to your Buyer Personas are twice as likely to see their individual emails opened. Think about the problems your chosen Persona may encounter, the language they respond to and what they’re most likely to find valuable.
3. Grow Your List
Growing your list is important. The people on your list are people who already like you, they want to see your content. Knowing how and when to ask people to join your list is key in keeping it high-quality. Make the process to subscribe to your list as simple as possible, encourage your current subscribers to forward your content onto their friends and family. Make sure all of your Social Media profiles have an obvious option to opt-in to your list and collect email addresses offline to add to your list. Make sure to send a welcome email to anyone who has not explicitly subscribed to your list and include an obvious opt-out.
4. Know Your Best Practice Rules and Follow Them
There are whole books written on Email Marketing best practice so I’ll keep this short and sweet.
- 5 links max! The optimum number is 1-3 links in any one email, the more you have the lower your conversion rate.
- Use images. But no more than 3 per email.
- No more than 20 lines of text. Ensure it’s all well formatted, long paragraphs or walls of texts turn people off instantly.
- Keep your branding consistent across all of your emails. You’re training your customers to open an email, see your branding header and immediately expect great content.
- Design with Mobile in mind. Over 80% of emails are first opened on a Mobile device now. This means single column design, big obvious Calls-To-Action and any pages linked to should also be Mobile friendly.
5. Focus On Tracking, Do More Of What Works
Every email you send gives you valuable information you should be tracking. In Digital Marketing we talk about making incremental gains, Email Marketing is no different. The smallest changes can effect your Open Rates, Click-Through Rates and Conversions. Best Practice rules are the starting point you work from, use real life information to tweak your emails to your customers. Trial different fonts, image sizes, button placements etc. Regularly review your metrics and focus on what brings you value. It’s easy to get caught up in one piece of information however you have to focus on the whole picture. If something increases your open rate but decreases your conversions you have to ask whether that is bringing value to you.
At the end of the day no-one knows your business better than you. But few people know Email Marketing better than Tamsin. Take these lessons learned from studying the data on millions of emails sent and apply them to your own campaigns. Tweak, finesse and fine-tune your emails at every opportunity and you could find yourself surpassing the 38x average ROI of Email Marketing, and who doesn’t want that?!