Email marketing is surely not dead and the advancement in technologies in improving email marketing operations is the proof that email is still a dependable digital marketing tool. In order to utilize the most of the email marketing, the primitive step is to build an email list by getting niche audience to sign up and subscribe to  your newsletters and email communications. However, creating a long email list will not guarantee your subscribers to open emails, take intended actions and engage with your messages! Unless your subscribers are not opening your emails, building a large email list will not impact in your email marketing campaign and your business will not gain anything from your investment in email campaigns.

That’s why the first and the foremost thing you need to work on is how to get people open your emails and this is exactly what we are going to emphasize in this discussion. There are many ways to increase email open rates, but surprisingly, marketers overlook many easy ways that can drastically impact in boosting email open rates. Before and after implementing these following strategies, it is important to measure your email marketing efforts with diverse parameters that ensure your emails are opened such as, number of people marking your emails as spam, unsubscribing from the email list, receiving your emails in their inboxes, opening your emails and clicking on links among many other parameters. 

1. A good subject line is a must 

The first thing marketers need to focus in order to improve the open rates is undoubtedly the subject line, which is the preface of every email. When the subject line will attract your audience, they will automatically find the subject line interesting enough to click and open the email. Otherwise, they might simply mark the email as spam or move to a different folder which groups all the promotional emails or simply delete from the inbox without even opening the email. So, how to make the subject lines entice your subscribers? Key pointers that turn a plain-Jane subject line into an audience-magnet include these following – 

  • The short and simple is the cornerstone of winning the attention – so, make sure the character limit of the subject line should not exceed 50.
  • The lure of false promises is short-lived and fails to keep people engaged when they find the offer is not beneficial enough! If the false promises in the subject line are not supported by the email content, your subscribers will lose interest eventually and worse still, can mark such emails as spam! 
  • Use of all capitals in the subject line can scream the message loud and offend your subscribers. So, do not write an all-caps subject line and also do not add too many exclamation marks. 
  • Stop including words which invoke the feeling in subscribers that they have to perform a difficult task such as scrolling through a long content. Instead, choose words which will not intimidate subscribers, but will encourage them to check out the mail such as, explain how they can benefit by opening the email. 

After implementing these techniques, you need to different variants of email subject lines to figure which lines are working in your favor to pull the audience. 

2. Include first person to add personal touch 

To add more personal touches to emails from the sender’s name to email copy to make the emails appear to be sent by a person instead of a brand or and machine. With such added personal touch in your emails, recipients will feel connected as email copies seem conversions between two persons than between an organization and humans, thus, email open rates will also increase.

Soften the formal tone of the email, copy by adding friendly and welcoming messages. Write in a more informal fashion such as, starting the email as ‘Hi <First Name>’ similar to a personal email and ending your messages with sender’s first name, ‘Best’, ‘Until next time’ etc.

3. Prevent spam filters

Often emails fail to reach the subscriber’s inbox because they caught up by spam filters. One of the most common reasons is the email subject line which may contain characters such as too many exclamation marks, some symbols, and inclusion of words in the subject line such as ‘Free’, ‘Get Rich’, ‘Buy’ etc. When email servers find these words or characters in an email subject line, the servers take the immediate action of redirecting those emails from inboxes to spam folders. Also, when numerous subscribers have earlier marked emails from your business as spam can result email messages causes negative marking to the sender’s reputation and redirecting all the emails from that sender to the spam folder, preventing people to find those emails. 

Another common reason why emails get marked as spam is when emails contain too many links which reduces the trustworthiness in emails. Hence, it is imperative to check if your emails do  not contain excessive links in email copy as well as aforementioned words and characters to minimize all the risks of spam filters. 

4. Spot the best time to send emails

After you have built the email list, the next thing you need to work on is to make sure the best time to send emails to different customer segments. One smart technique is to create an email preference center or subscription management centers where subscribers specify the frequency in which they want to receive email communications – you can simply start by following the frequency they have mentioned to schedule or automate your email campaigns. 

After launching a set of two email campaigns, monitor the campaign performance data to track which dates and times are yielding more email opens, clicks and engagement on emails. Based on these insights, you can determine and tweak your email launch schedule and frequency.  We recommend performing these A/B tests for a few weeks consistently to figure out the best time, which works for different email campaigns and segments.

5. Quality of email copy

Many marketers, set up their email marketing platforms to schedule emails as and when they share new information on the company website or publish a new blog post. However, apart from treating emails as scheduling email as to notify a new blog post or website update, marketers must create quality content for emails. Create emails with more meaningful and valuable content which will interest and benefit the targeted audience. Create email content based on topics that will explain why you are emailing them or why they should open your email without stuffing with too much content. The email content facilitates recipients to discover information in-mail information and links so that they can take the intended actions or engage with your easily and quickly. When your recipients will find your email content easy to consume and interesting to open all your emails. 

In addition to these usually overlooked techniques, it is also imperative to ensure all your emails are optimized for  your targeted audience’s mobile devices and mobile email clients. One of the most failsafe ways to make sure your email messages are mobile-ready is to use an opt for a responsive email design template and to conduct A/B tests to open a set of two emails on various mobile email clients including the most popular ones such as Apple Mail, Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo Mail.

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