Email marketing is an essential tool for marketing your business. You already have awesome content and social media strategies, but email marketing allows you to build your bond with your existing customers and share news and knowledge to create brand loyalty.
Seventy-eight percent of business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) marketers use email marketing, according to the Content Marketing Institute’s latest survey. If you haven’t built your customer email list yet, you need to get moving!
After researching your industry, building an engaging and visually appealing email template and preparing your email list, you are ready for your first send. Customers are much more discriminating when it comes to giving out their email address. Your own email inbox is likely inundated with newsletters each day, so your customers likely see a value in receiving an email from you if they are willing to share their information. Now, you have to respect that trust by making your email worthwhile for your clients.
The first step is composing a catchy headline. As you know from your personal email, if the subject line does not catch your attention, it immediately goes to the trash or spam folder. Don’t think that capitalizing a few words, including the word “free” and ending with plenty of exclamation points is an effective strategy – emails like that are almost guaranteed to be filtered straight to your customers’ spam folders.
Your headline should accomplish one of the following:
Now you’re ready to brainstorm. Keep in mind the voice and style you have established with your content marketing strategy and the tone you use for communicating with customers. Are you super bubbly or matter of fact? You should match your style to the rest of your content so as not to confuse your customers. If your customers signed up for special offers and promotions, it is okay to take a “sale-y” tone, but you might not find success otherwise.
A few more suggestions:
Need some more help? Take a look at newspaper headlines (you still read the newspaper, right?) either online or in print. News headlines are carefully crafted to get the reader to read the rest of the story and turn past the front page, but do not take a sales tone.
MailChimp, a popular email marketing service, recently surveyed over 40 million emails sent by their customers to find the most and least effective subject lines. These are below:
Comparing these subject lines, you notice that the simplest headlines did the best because they explained exactly what information was inside their emails. It also suggests using a consistent style when it comes to writing subject lines reassures your customers that the value of the email content also will remain the same for each send.
Carefully crafting your headlines will result in a higher open rate and makes email campaigns a valuable marketing strategy for your business. Continue to experiment with subject lines as you build your list to track which ones result in the highest open and click rates, or hire a firm like So Fun Media to create an effective strategy for you.
Photo credit: Flickr user David Goehring. Used with permission through Creative Commons.